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 circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud,
Under the bludgeonings 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.
Meaning of the Poem: Invictus is a short Victorian poem by the English poet William Ernest Henley (1849–1903). It was written in 1875 and published in 1888 in his first volume of poems, Book of Verses, in the section Life and Death (Echoes). Originally, the poem was published with no title. The second edition of Henley’s Book of Verses added a dedication “To R. T. H. B.”—a reference to Robert Thomas Hamilton Bruce (1846–1899), a successful Scottish flour merchant, baker, and literary patron. The 1900 edition of Henley’s Poems, published after Bruce’s death, altered the dedication to “I. M. R. T. Hamilton Bruce (1846–1899)” (I. M. standing for “in memoriam”). source: Wikipedia