I shall live to be old, who feared I should die young
I shall live to be old.
I shall cling to life as the leaves cling to the creaking oak
In the rustle of the falling snow and the cold.
The other trees let loose their leaves on the air
In their russet and red,
I have lived long enough to wonder which is best,
And to envy sometimes the way of the early dead.
Not all die early, dying young–
Maturity of Fate
Is consummated equally
In Ages, or a Night–
A Hoary Boy, I’ve known to drop
Whole statured — by the side
Of Junior of Fourscore–’twas Act
Not Period–that died.