Came at the evening, cold and grey,
To a chasm, vast and deep and wide,
Through which was flowing a swollen tide.
The old man crossed in the twilight dim.
That swollen stream held no fears for him,
But he paused when safe on the other side
And built a bridge to span the tide.
“Old man,” said a fellow pilgrim near,
“You’re wasting strength with building here.
Your journey ends with the ending day.
You never again must pass this way.
You’ve crossed this chasm deep and wide.
Why build this bridge at the even’ tide?”
The builder lifted his old grey head,
“Good friend, in the path I have come,” he said,
“There followeth after me today
A youth, whose feet must pass this way.
“This swollen stream that was naught for me,
To that fair-haired youth may a pitfall be.
He too must cross in the twilight dim.
Good friend, I am building the bridge for him.”
by Will Allen Dromgoole