In the rosy light of my day's fair morning,
    Ere ever a storm cloud darkened the west,
Ere even a shadow of night gave warning
    When life seemed only a pleasure quest,
Why then all humour and comedy scorning--
    I liked high tragedy best.

I liked the challenge, the fierce fought duel,
    With a death or a parting in every act.
I liked the villain to be more cruel
    Than the basest villain could be in fact:
For it fed the fires of my mind with the fuel
    Of the things that my life lacked.

But as time passed on, and I met real sorrow,
    And she played at night on the stage--my heart,
I found I could not forget on the morrow
    The pain I had felt in her tragic part.
For alas! no longer I needed to borrow
    My grief from the actor's art.

And as life grows older, and therefore sadder
    (Though sweeter maybe with its autumn haze),
I find more pleasure in watching the gladder
    And lighter order of humorous plays.
Where the mirth is as mad, or maybe madder,
    Than the mirth of my lost days.

I like to be forced to laugh and be merry,
    Though the earth with sorrow and pain is rife:
I like for an evening at least to bury
    All thoughts of trouble, or pain, or strife.
In sooth, I like to be moved to the very
    Emotions I miss in life.

Yesterdays. By Ella Wheeler Wilcox.
London: Gay & Hancock, 1916.

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