Before Dawn

by Amy Lowell

Amy Lowell

Life! Austere arbiter of each man's fate,

By whom he learns that Nature's steadfast laws

Are as decrees immutable; O pause

Your even forward march! Not yet too late

Teach me the needed lesson, when to wait

Inactive as a ship when no wind draws

To stretch the loosened cordage. One implores

Thy clemency, whose wilfulness innate

Has gone uncurbed and roughshod while the years

Have lengthened into decades; now distressed

He knows no rule by which to move or stay,

And teased with restlessness and desperate fears

He dares not watch in silence thy wise way

Bringing about results none could have guessed.