The Cross-roads

Henry Lawson, 1905

      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 all 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 to-night
             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.