Verse > Edgar Lee Masters > Spoon River Anthology

Edgar Lee Masters (1868–1950).  Spoon River Anthology.  1916.

62. Louise Smith

HERBERT broke our engagement of eight years 
When Annabelle returned to the village 
From the Seminary, ah me! 
If I had let my love for him alone 
It might have grown into a beautiful sorrow—         5
Who knows?—filling my life with healing fragrance. 
But I tortured it, I poisoned it, 
I blinded its eyes, and it became hatred— 
Deadly ivy instead of clematis. 
And my soul fell from its support,  10
Its tendrils tangled in decay. 
Do not let the will play gardener to your soul 
Unless you are sure 
It is wiser than your soul’s nature. 



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