Edith Nesbit

The Garden Refused

THERE is a garden made for our delight,
   Where all the dreams we dare not dream come true.
      I know it, but I do not know the way.
We slip and tumble in the doubtful night,
   Where everything is difficult and new,
      And clouds our breath has made obscure the day.

The blank unhappy towns, where sick men strive,
   Still doing work that yet is never done;
      The hymns to Gold that drown their desperate voice;
The weeds that grow where once corn stood alive,
   The black injustice that puts out the sun:
      These are our portion, since they are our choice.

Yet there the garden blows with rose on rose,
   The sunny, shadow-dappled lawns are there;
      There the immortal lilies, heavenly sweet.
O roses, that for us shall not unclose!
   O lilies, that we shall not pluck or wear!
      O dewy lawns untrodden by our feet!

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