Mastery

(1967)

"Mastery" is the second song in John Duke's song cycle Songs Out of Sorrow: Six Songs for Mezzo-Soprano. The song cycle sets the poetry of Sara Teasdale.

Songs Out of Sorrow: Six Songs for Mezzo-Soprano is included in the John Duke volume, Songs, Vol. 2, Medium Voice, published by Southern Music Company.

Mastery
by Sara Teasdale


I would not have a god come in
To shield me suddenly from sin,
And set my house of life to rights;
Nor angels with bright burning wings
Ordering my earthly thoughts and things;
Rather my own frail guttering lights
Wind blown and nearly beaten out;
Rather the terror of the nights
And long, sick groping after doubt;
Rather be lost than let my soul
Slip vaguely from my own control --
Of my own spirit let me be
In sole though feeble mastery.


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