THE SIN OF OMISSION - Margaret E. Sangster Poems


Poems » margaret e. sangster » the sin of omission


It isn't the thing you do, dear;
        It's the thing you leave undone,
That gives you a bit of heartache
        At setting of the sun.
The tender word forgotten,
        The letter you did not write,
The flowers you did not send, dear,
        Are your haunting ghosts to-night.

The stone you might have lifted
        Out of a brother's way,
The bit of heartsome counsel
        You were hurried too much to say;
The loving touch of the hand, dear,
        The gentle and winsome tone,
Which you had no time nor thought for,
        With troubles enough of your own.

Those little acts of kindness,
        So easily out of mind;
Those chances to be angels
        Which every one may find --
They come in night and silence --
        Each chill, reproachful wraith --
When hope is faint and flagging
        And a blight has dropped on faith.

For life is all too short, dear,
        And sorrow is all too great;
To suffer our slow compassion
        That tarries until too late;
And it's not the thing you do, dear,
        It's the thing you leave undone,
Which gives you a bit of heartache
        At the setting of the sun.