by Nan Terrell Reed
They told me that Life could be just what I made it -
Life could be fashioned and worn like a gown;
I, the designer, mine the decision
Whether to wear it with bonnet or crown.
And so I selected the prettiest pattern -
Life should be made of the rosiest hue -
Something unique, and a bit out of fashion,
One that perhaps would be chosen by few.
But other folks came and they leaned o'er my shoulder;
Someone questioned the ultimate cost;
Somebody tangled the thread I was using;
One day I found that my scissors were lost.
And somebody claimed the material faded;
Somebody said I'd be tired ere 'twas worn;
Somebody's fingers, too pointed and spiteful,
Snatched at the cloth, and I saw it was torn.
Oh! somebody tried to do all the sewing,
Wanting always to advise or condone.
Here is my life, the product of many;
Where is that gown I could fashion - alone?
I had first read this poem in the poetry book, The Best Loved Poems Of The American People when I was twenty years old. Little did I know how true the message was until many years later. The truth be told is that when we think we can do everything by ourselves, alone, without the help of the ONE who created us, that is when things can so easily go wrong.