I CAN not tell what way the years will lead,
How hands may falter and how feet may bleed,
What deep contentment I shall have or need,
I can not tell.

I do not know why the fleet early years
Should shake me with surmise of future fears;
Why golden suns set in a gloom of tears
I do not know.

I must not ask of winter winds that come
Across the ground where men sleep cold and dumb,
If I shall rest there well, — of my last home
I must not ask.

I shall not shrink, maybe I shall not dread,
When time has slowed my step and bowed my head,
To go away, to join the cloistered dead
I shall not shrink.

I shall have hope, in spite of heavy shame,
Among God's pensioners to find my name, —
In Him who for the strayed and lost ones came
I shall have hope.
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