The Outer Gate

Life said: "My house is thine with all its store:
   Behold I open shining ways to thee --
   Of every inner portal make thee free:
O child, I may not bar the outer door.
Go from me if thou wilt, to come no more;
   But all thy pain is mine, thy flesh of me;
   And must I hear thee, faint and woefully,
Call on me from the darkness and implore?"

Nay, mother, for I follow at thy will.
   But oftentimes thy voice is sharp to hear,
   Thy trailing fragrance heavy on the breath;
Always the outer hall is very still,
   And on my face a pleasant wind and clear
   Blows straitly from the narrow gate of Death.

by Nora May French

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