Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

by William Ernest Henley

Comments (312)

I love it
one of the most inspiring poems I have read...
never surrender what ever life throws at us, keep going till no more?
I understand this poem so clearly living a life full in the Fell Clutch of Circumstance. We have to accept whatever life throws at us with strength, dignity, and sometimes anger, never giving in. And when we find ourselves thinking about letting go when we are in the Horror of the Shade, we somehow have to move forward, It Matters Not How Strait The Gait, How Charged With Punishments The Scroll, because We Are The Masters Of Our Fate, The Captain Of Our Soul. It is our life and we need purpose of strength to let others know we deserve dignity, even in our darkest moments. I believe this to be one of the greatest poems of our society, that with a few words can stir within us the courage that we do not believe we possess. These words take away my darkness for a short while giving me time to think about what I have that circumstances in life cannot take!
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