Road to Eden
Donald P. Goodman III
Oh, the long, rocky road back to Eden is full of the snares and the troubles of life, and no man can begin to walk down it before he's begun to wade into the strife; for the sword made of fire which is plac'd at the gate won't allow any mortal to pass, and the long, rocky road back to Eden is nothing but thorny and rugged morass.
When a young, pretty maiden, all dress'd up in white, with a hat to shield eyes from the sun sets her feet on the grass of that difficult road, can she hope that she'll ever be done? She has never laid eyes on the garden, and not done a thing which should keep her away; so then why must she walk on this arduous road, where she easily might go astray?
When men liv'd in the garden, they liv'd in their ease, and had nothing to worry their minds, and were thrown from the gates for their wrongdoing, suffering penalties of many kinds; they were made to go forth and to labor, to earn all their bread by their sweat and their tears, and to hope that the road back to Eden might open one day, if the tribe perseveres.
And one day it was open'd, when time was fulfill'd, and a hero broke through a new way, and the masses ran forward to take that long road, when they heard what the hero did say. But the road kill'd the hero, and kill'd many more, for to walk that long road is to die; and the maiden, before she began, knew the tomb was the only place she'd ever lie.
O good maiden! what had she e'er done to deserve this long journey until she was dead? What could such a young girl ever do that would merit a hole in the ground for a bed? She had not been expell'd from the garden; for what was she punish'd? for what must she sigh? Why was she not provided as those others were? Was it due to their deed she must die?
For the way is so hard; there are so many other less difficult roads she could take, roads which wouldn't draw blood from her unshodden feet, she could take for her well-being's sake; all the roads which point elsewhere than Eden are short and lead only to safety and ease; but could this youthful maiden be happy with that? could her body her soul ever please?
But this road would have never been open'd if not for the fault which these others had made; were it not for this happiest fault, although happy, she e'er in the garden had stay'd; though the child of poor parents, and thus poor herself, she could now become rich beyond dream, beyond anything anyone e'er could have hop'd, in that long-ago garden agleam.
So she walk'd on the road back to Eden, full-knowing that she would be going beyond, for the disc of the sun in the east was a-rising, inviting her; she would respond. The girl knew if she kept to the road, she'd see joy beyond any on all other ways; as the light of the sun cover'd up all the stars, the girl laugh'd like a child as she plays.