Eternal Me

by Charlotte Perkins Stetson Gilman

Charlotte Perkins Gilman

What an exceeding rest 'twill be
When I can leave off being Me!
To think of it! — at last be rid
Of all the things I ever did!

Done with the varying distress
Of retroactive consciousness!
Set free to feel the joy unknown
Of Life and Love beyond my own!

Why should I long to have John Smith
Eternally to struggle with?
I'm John — but somehow cherubim
Seem quite incongruous with him.

It would not seem so queer to dwell
Eternally John Smith in Hell.
To be one man forever seems
Most fit in purgatorial dreams.

But Heaven! Rest and Power and Peace
Must surely mean the soul's release
From this small labeled entity —
This passing limitation — Me!

Last updated May 13, 2023