Let them fight it out, friend! things have gone too far.
God must judge the couple: leave them as they are
---Whichever one's the guiltless, to his glory,
And whichever one the guilt's with, to my story!
Why, you would not bid men, sunk in such a slough,
Strike no arm out further, stick and stink as now,
Leaving right and wrong to settle the embroilment,
Heaven with snaky hell, in torture and entoilment?
Who's the culprit of them? How must he conceive
God---the queen he caps to, laughing in his sleeve,
`` 'Tis but decent to profess oneself beneath her:
``Still, one must not be too much in earnest, either!''
Better sin the whole sin, sure that God observes;
Then go live his life out! Life will try his nerves,
When the sky, which noticed all, makes no disclosure,
And the earth keeps up her terrible composure.
Let him pace at pleasure, past the walls of rose,
Pluck their fruits when grape-trees graze him as he goes!
For he 'gins to guess the purpose of the garden,
With the sly mute thing, beside there, for a warden.
What's the leopard-dog-thing, constant at his side,
A leer and lie in every eye of its obsequious hide?
When will come an end to all the mock obeisance,
And the price appear that pays for the misfeasance?
So much for the culprit. Who's the martyred man?
Let him bear one stroke more, for be sure he can!
He that strove thus evil's lump with good to leaven,
Let him give his blood at last and get his heaven!
All or nothing, stake it! Trust she God or no?
Thus far and no farther? farther? be it so!
Now, enough of your chicane of prudent pauses,
Sage provisos, sub-intents and saving-clauses!
Ah, ``forgive'' you bid him? While God's champion lives,
Wrong shall be resisted: dead, why, he forgives.
But you must not end my friend ere you begin him;
Evil stands not crowned on earth, while breath is in him.
Once more---Will the wronger, at this last of all,
Dare to say, ``I did wrong,'' rising in his fall?
No?---Let go then! Both the fighters to their places!
While I count three, step you back as many paces!
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Before by Robert Browning )
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
William Ernest Henley
(1849 - 1902)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(27 October 1914 – 9 November 1953)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)
(30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936)
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- To an Athlete Dying Young, Alfred Edward Housman
- Alone, Maya Angelou
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
- A Question, Robert Frost
- Alone With Everybody, Charles Bukowski
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
Poem of the Day
- 01 - A Little Talk, George Hunter
- Belief, Kela LewisMorin
- Tum Aate To, Akhtar Jawad
- Dark Crevices, Kela LewisMorin
- I Submit, Vera Sidhwa
- Nadine, David Lewis Paget
- Experiencing Humiliation, Lawrence S. Pertillar
- Woes Of The World, Kela LewisMorin
- my favorite painter is the sky, Bull Hawking
- The Music of the World, Vera Sidhwa