They told me that Life could be just what I made it -
Life could be fashioned and worn like a gown;
I, the designer, mine the decision
Whether to wear it with bonnet or crown.
And so I selected the prettiest pattern -
Life should be made of the rosiest hue -
Something unique, and a bit out of fashion,
One that perhaps would be chosen by few.
But other folks came and they leaned o’er my shoulder;
Someone questioned the ultimate cost;
Somebody tangled the thread I was using;
One day I found that my scissors were lost.
And somebody claimed the material faded;
Somebody said I’d be tired ere ‘twas worn;
Somebody’s fingers, too pointed and spiteful,
Snatched at the cloth, and I saw it was torn.
Oh! somebody tried to do all the sewing,
Wanting always to advise or condone.
Here is my life, the product of many;
Where is that gown I could fashion - alone?
by Nan Terrell Reed
Nan Terrell Reed was born on 31 May 1886 in Connecticut, United States of America. She was a poet and a songwriter. She began writing poems in childhood, and later decided to make a business of poetry writing after becoming married to Russell A. Reed (1884 - 1969), making an effort to write a poem a day. Her poems were widely published in magazines and books, including in her book, “Prose and Poems” (1919). Nan Terrell Reed passed on at 82 years of age on 14 February 1969.