I thought to make a peaceful home,
Earth's sweetest gift and best,
But Fate said sternly, 'Go and roam
On highways of unrest.'

I planned to help a Soul in need
With open heart and purse;
It only woke ignoble greed
And proved the mortal's curse.

I tried to cast a radiant way
On Sorrow's shadowy path;
But Sorrow turned her face away
And cursed me in her wrath.

I said, 'I will walk on alone
In ways toil fills with flowers.'
Fate answered in an undertone,
'Nay, you shall walk in ours.'

Quoth I, 'In service all attain
Contentment, I am sure.'
Fate flung me on a bed of pain,
And simply said, 'Endure!'

Though all my plans have been laid low,
The choicest and most dear
Will yet be realised I know:
Fate cannot interfere.

I shall meet Death adown the road,
That wise and glorious one
Who tells us as he lifts our load
That Life has just begun.

I shall go with him to the place
Where spirit comrades wait:
Again shall I behold the face
Of my Eternal Mate.
Yea, Death and I shall win the race,
O impotent, stern Fate!

Poems of affection. By Ella Wheeler Wilcox.
London: Gay & Hancock, 1920.

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