My Unconquerable Soul {Invictus}

by Sep 22, 2016Emotional Health

It is a universal law, that irrespective of who we are, we will all experience travesty and triumph.

It is essential to appreciate that no matter the circumstance, we are each charged with the responsibility for our own lives. While this entrustment may seem difficult, albeit impossible at times, the responsibility for our destiny resides entirely with us.

This poem written by William Ernest Henley (1849-1903) an English Poet, is an inspiring description of the importance of remaining the master of our own destiny, regardless of the pains and perils that life can throw at us.

Henley states that we are inevitably responsible for our own happiness, our own path. He wrote this poem at the age of seventeen, while recovering from a leg amputation. Invictus in Latin means unconquered.


Out of the night that covers me,

Black as the pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstances

I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeoning of chance

My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

Looms but the horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate:

I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley (1849-1903)

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Image by Ian D. Keating