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Mistakes

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

God sent us here to make mistakes,
To strive, to fail, to re-begin,
To taste the tempting fruit of sin,
And find what bitter food it makes.

To miss the path, to go astray,
To wander blindly in the night;
But, searching, praying for the light,
Until at last we find the way.

And looking back along the past,
We know we needed all the strain
Of fear and doubt and strife and pain
To make us value peace, at last.

Who fails, finds later triumph sweet;
Who stumbles once, walks then with care,
And knows the place to cry "Beware"
To other unaccustomed feet.

Through strife the slumbering soul awakes,
We learn on error's troubled route
The truths we could not prize without
The sorrow of our sad mistakes.