‘The Cross-Roads’

Once more I write a line to you,
while darker shadows fall;
dear friends of mine who have been true,
and steadfast through it all.
If I have written bitter rhymes,
with many lines that halt,
and if I have been false at times
it was not my fault.

To Heaven’s decree I would not bow,
and I sank very low –
the bitter things are written now,
and we must let them go.
But I feel softened as I write;
the better spirit springs,
and I am very sad tonight
because of many things.

The friendships that I have abused,
the trust I did betray,
the talents that I have misused,
the gifts I threw away.
The things that did me little good,
and – well my cheeks might burn –
the kindly letters that I should
have answered by return.

But you might deem them answered now,
and answered from my heart;
and injured friends will understand
‘tis I who feel the smart.
But I have done with barren strife
and dark imaginings,
and in my future work and life
will seek the better things.

— Henry Lawson


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