Beds of flowers, or vales of tears; Dewdrops on buds of roses—
Or miserly people, as dry as desert‐sands; The little, running joys of childhood,
Or the stampede of wild passions;
The ebb and ow of laughter,
Or the haunting melancholy of sorrow; The will‐o’‐the‐wisp of desire,
Which leads men only from mire to mire; The octopus‐grip of self‐complacency, Time‐beaten habits;
The first cry of the new‐born babe— And the last sigh of death;
The bursting joy of good health
Or the cruel ravages of disease—
These, all, are but shadows
Seen by us on the cosmic mental‐screen. Shadows — naught but shadows!
Yet shadows have, oh, so many shades! For there are dark shadows,
And there are light shadows—
And thus it is we see:
Even shadows may entertain!