For Fear

By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

For fear of prowling beasts at night
They blocked the cave;
Women and children hid from sight,
Men scarce more brave.

For fear of warrior’s sword and spear
They barred the gate;
Women and children lived in fear,
Men lived in hate.

For fear of criminals today
We lock the door;
Women and children still to stay
Hid evermore.

Come out! Ye need no longer hide!
What fear you now?
No wolf or lion waits outside–
Only a cow.

Come out! The world approaches peace,
War nears its end;
No warrior watches your release–
Only a friend.

Come out! The night of crime has fled–
Day is begun;
Here is no criminal to dread–
Only your son.

The world, half yours, demands your care,
Waken and come!
Make it a woman’s world; safe, fair,
Garden and home.