When I first read this poem, I was married. I didn't understand it,
nor did I like it. In fact, I really didn't like it.
It had no relevance to me. I was supposedly happily married at the time.
After my divorce, I began to understand it's meaning.
I came to realize that it is about inner strength, and learning that women
have to learn not to depend on a man, or anyone else, for their happiness
and fulfillment. I learned that in everyone's life there are good-byes
of one kind or another. We are always saying good-bye.
Spouses let us down; spouses disappoint us; spouses don't keep promises.
Spouses and other loved ones die.
Friends move away; friendships cool, and children grow up and leave home.
They begin their own lives and aren't so much a part of ours anymore.
Some stay close to us, live close to us; some don't.
Parents do the best they can, but most of us have some scars and issues from childhood.
Eventually, these scars leave us, also.
we have to build our own world, plan our own lives, and learn not to
depend on anyone else except God. Most of all, we realize that we can survive
if we are strong. Then, anything that comes along share our lives
or to make us happier is icing on the cake.


"After a While"
(Comes the Dawn"

"After a while you learn the subtle difference
between holding a hand and chaining a soul.
And you learn that love doesn't mean leaning
and company isn't security.
(Kisses aren't contracts and presents aren't promises.)

After awhile you begin to accept your defeats
with your head up and your eyes open,
with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child.
And you learn to build your roads on today
because tomorrow's ground is too uncertain
and the inevitable has a way of crumbling in mid-flight.

After a while you learn that even sunshine burns
if you stand too long in one place.

So, you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul
instead of waiting for someone else to bring you flowers.
And you learn you really can endure,
that you really do have worth.
You learn that with every good-bye comes the dawn."


Author Unknown

Who really wrote "Comes the Dawn"???

It is an ongoing dispute.

I had first credited this poem it to Veronica Shofftall. I received an e-mail from someone telling me that Veronica wrote it. There have been several versions of this poem. Usually it is attributed to "Unknown" because there is no official copyright owned by anyone.

Before you write to tell me that this poem was written by Veronica Shofftall, please read an e-mail that I got from Judith Evans in September of 2004. Pay close attention to the wording and spelling.

"Just thought you'd like to know, Comes the Dawn (sometimes called "After a While", or "You Learn") was written by ME a loooong time ago. decades and decades! You see it in many forms, usually attributed to someone, often a "Veronica Shofftall" and supposedly even copyrighted by her. (She even included it in a self e-published collection called "Mirrors and Other Insults", which she then had to remove from the internet because. like, it's not written by her!) There are several "renditions". No doubt, someone picked it up and wanted to put there own spin on it. Odd. This is probably one of the most plagiarized poems in the world! And I didn't make a DIME off it!
This is the real rendition (as you can see, it actually has the phrase "comes the dawn" which V. S. didn't bother to include in her spin)"I was young and stupid. I let it get out in the public sector and kick myself in the behind every time I see it, or a rewritten version of it, being claimed by this person, that person or attributed to "Author Unknown". I don't know who Veronica Shofftall is (or any of the other people that may lay claim to it) but I have gotten tired of seeing her name (or theirs) all over my work. She needs to go write her own poem.

Not that it makes any difference now. I just wanted to let you know, for the record,
because it was on your site."

Judith B. Evans

Now, before you believe that Judith Evans wrote it, read on.

Most recently I got an e-mail from a man named Lorenzo saying that Jorge Luis Borges (August 24, 1899 – June 14, 1986), who was an Argentine writer and considered one of the foremost literary figures of the 20th century, wrote a poem titled "Y Uno Aprende" which he says was translated by the others who claim it.
On August 30, 2007, I got another e-mail saying Borges wrote it.

You can read a huge argument over who wrote it on
Personally, when I find that more than one person claims authorship,
I know that one of them is lying, so I don't credit anyone.
It amazes me that people can be such liars.

The mystery deepens. Since there is no proof, I say the author is Unknown and Unproven.


2012 - Update

Unbelievably, in October of 2012 I received another letter from Judith Evans,
and I quote verbatim:

"Not all Plagiarism is intentional. I was shocked to find Luis Jorges poem and spent a few weeks scratching my head and trying to figure out where I had been exposed to it and never could figure it out. I can only assume that I read it or was other wise exposed when I was young and just didn’t remember where the words came from But I want you to know that I contacted as many people as I could remember or find to correct the information. because I was NOT the originator of that poem. I honestly thought I was. It had such a familiar sound. But then, truly gifted poems to speak to the soul in each of us. I am sorry I mislead you. It wasn’t intentional. I feel sad for Mr. Borges that this - Quite possibly one of the most beloved poems in the world – somehow became so detached From his name. What a person writes he/she should get credit for."

Actually, the only thing that matters is that the poem has been meaningful to hundreds, if not thousands, of people, and that should be enough credit for the real author.
Moral: If you write something prophetic, get it copyrighted.



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Page originated in 1998,
updated 6/1/0 & 9/22/05, 4/4/07,
8/30/07 and 3/10/10.