Fowler Door

The house was remodeled several years ago, and the door sold.
copyright 1919

The Fowler Tavern Door
Built about 1760

Over that threshold, in and out,
In haste or leisure, brisk or spent,
With counsel stern, or eager shout,
The land's defenders came and went.
More than a hundred years it stood
A landmark for the country-side,
With stone-like figures carved in wood
(Perchance the worker had in mind
Some English homestead left behind),
We held it dear in heedless pride.
      We cared but did not care enough;
      And one day, ere we were aware.
      Through fault of none, or fault of all,
      The Doorway was no longer there!

No blessing that the gods can send,
No treasure that the earth can yeild,
Is better than a faithful friend,
And nothing needs a stronger shield.
A thoughtless word, a selfish act,
A chance neglect may disappoint;
Too great demands, too little tact,
May strain the tie to breaking-point.
      We care, but do not care enough;
      The flower is bruised that once was fair,
      And, fault of both, or fault of one,
      The Friendship is no longer there!

Ah, my beloved country! Speak
With every powe at thy command,
With beacon-flash from peak to peak,
To every heart in every land!
For all our plans of earthly good
Truth is the only sure control,
And universal brotherhood
Depends on each and every soul.
      We care, but we must care enough,
      And humbly watchful, greatly dare
      Against fault of one, and fault of all
      Lest Freedom be no longer there!

                        —Frances Fowler.

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