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(1849 - 1902 / Gloucester / England)

Invictus

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
........................
........................
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Comments about this poem (Apparition by William Ernest Henley )

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  • Edward Webb (12/6/2013 8:05:00 PM)

    This poem shows that even in death there is a victory,
    WHAT EVER HAPPENS IN LIFE YOUR SOUL CANNOT BE CHANGED,
    The final lines have the importance of drawing it back to I

    40 person liked.
    40 person did not like.
  • Jessica Mcquistan (12/1/2013 3:50:00 PM)

    I feel that Henley is trying to say that even though there is a lot of hardships in life we are the ones who have the strength to perservere through it all. Hence the part that says I am the master of my fate
    I am the captain of my soul

  • Krishnakumar Chandrasekar Nair (10/23/2013 5:28:00 AM)

    Beyond this place of joy or fears
    Transient, there is a place
    Where no more are we puppets of fate
    And dwell eternal in love and grace.....

    (Everybody welcome to my page)

  • Colin Beard (10/17/2013 12:27:00 PM)

    To put to rest all of the religious/ anti-religious debate over the poem, can I just ask one question? Does it really matter? I consider myself a religious person, but even I recognize this as one of the most powerful and influential poems ever written. However, if we were to truly understand the meaning of this poem, we must take into consideration what Henley meant by the word, soul. If you look over his biography, you learn that he suffered many hardships in his life including the death of his six year old daughter as well as an amputation. Yet despite the many trials of life, he was able to prevail. I think he meant by soul that we, as humans, have the unique ability to overcome any obstacle, despite the fell clutch of circumstance, whether this ability was given to us from God or not. And that we, being the captain of our fate have complete control over the choices that we make, which will inevitably control the course of our destiny. So really, i don't believe that this poem is religious or anti-religious, but rather it is neutral. But what do I know? I'm just a high-school teenager.

  • Alaa Hussain (10/12/2013 7:22:00 PM)

    (Days) apologized to me a friend and
    said, I've missed the old days very
    simple words routine life fixed
    principles do not budge the rest of the
    time to renew and promised era and
    tender

  • Kedo Nako (10/8/2013 3:50:00 PM)

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  • Daniel Carhart (10/6/2013 9:58:00 PM)

    I first read this poem about 1955, I committed it to memory almost at once. I think of it often and recite it to myself frequently, as I do I find that I have an almost constant revision of my understanding of the words, if I live to be 100, I may eventually be able to encompass its' total meaning, if I do not it will have been time well spent, I have nothing but the deepest admiration for Henley's provocative words.

  • Joseph Karimoni (9/26/2013 4:03:00 AM)

    wow..this is one of the best poems of all times.

  • Ricardo Leonardo (9/17/2013 8:54:00 PM)

    Yes, WEH just knew the life on earth. I appreciate and honor him because he understood what is 'soul'...

  • Ezra The3rd (9/15/2013 2:15:00 PM)

    Bible Bashers, please read William Ernest Henley's bio and the hardships he went through before you condemn the man to hell. From the age of 12, Henley suffered from tuberculosis of the bone that resulted in the amputation of his left leg below the knee (in a time of limited/ineffective anaesthetic) , he had a further amputation of his other leg to save his life. He lost his daughter when she was five... he doesn't just talk of horrors, he has been through it. To have a fighting spirit like his is definitely a gift from God, and to those who are offended by the use of lowercase G, the originators of the word would call you blasphemers for even writing the full GOD, it was originally G-d because he is too great to be condensed into written form.

    This poem is a celebration of the God-given human spirit, if it offends you read something else.

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