The Wayfarer by Stephen Crane

The wayfarer,
Perceiving the pathway to truth,
Was struck with astonishment.
It was thickly grown with weeds.
“Ha,” he said,
“I see that none has passed here
In a long time.”
Later he saw that each weed
Was a singular knife.
“Well,” he mumbled at last,
“Doubtless there are other roads.”

—Stephen Crane

I first read this poem two years ago. However truthful, though, it didn’t leave a mark. I forgot about it soon after posting it on my previous blog. But it does address many of the things I’ve been struggling with and probably always will.

People have constructed many paths that people have taken over and over. Each person that passes through it makes it easier for the next one, taking down vegetation and marking a clear road. But the right path, or the path to truth, is walked by few, which means it is still full of vegetation, of weeds and knives.

Crane does an excellent job and to explain it any further would be counterproductive. I can just say I don’t want to be the wayfarer in the poem.

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