O Humankind, consult your better part
And all those joys of chance do not eschew -
You blight yourself before you've made a start
By doubting you've the grit to see 'em through!
And so you drift from pie to half-baked pie,
Your oven low, uncrisping to the full
Those best laid flans and tarts that catch the eye,
Although you claim your weight's unstinting pull.
I'll wager every greenfinch on that tree
That pecks and picks the feeder on the bough
Will have its nuts and fly away more free
Because it met the challenge here and now.
Too many folk about us take the view
That they are bound to fail, whatever they do.