Madison Julius Cawein



The Cross

by Madison Julius Cawein

The cross I bear no man shall know --
No man can ease the cross I bear! --
Alas! the thorny path of woe
Up the steep hill of care!

There is no word to comfort me;
No sign to help my bended head;
Deep night lies over land and sea,
And silence dark and dread.

To strive, it seems, that I was born,
For that which others shall obtain;
The disappointment and the scorn
Alone for me remain.

One half my life is overpast;
The other half I contemplate --
Meseems the past doth but forecast
A darker future state.

Sick to the heart of that which makes
Me hope and struggle and desire,
The aspiration here that aches
With ineffectual fire;

While inwardly I know the lack,
The insufficiency of power,
Each past day's retrospect makes black
Each morrow's coming hour.

Now in my youth would I could die! --
As others love to live, -- go down
Into the grave without a sigh,
Oblivious of renown!


The Garden Of Dreams
Copyright 1896
John P. Morton & Company, Louisville