By Carolyn Wells
Two shall be born the whole world wide apart,
And speak in different tongues, and pay their debts
In different kinds of coin; and give no heed
Each to the other’s being. And know not
That each might suit the other to a T,
If they were but correctly introduced.
And these, unconsciously, shall bend their steps,
Escaping Spaniards and defying war,
Unerringly toward the same trysting-place,
Albeit they know it not. Until at last
They enter the same door, and suddenly
They meet. And ere they’ve seen each other’s face
They fall into each other’s arms, upon
The Broadway cable car – and this is Fate!
Source: She Wields a Pen: American Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century (University of Iowa Press, 1997)
A prolific turn-of-the-century writer of poems, mysteries, children’s literature, parodies, and other humorous pieces, Carolyn Wells was born in Rahway, New Jersey. When she was six, Wells experienced hearing loss caused by scarlet fever, but went on to graduate as high school valedictorian and study humanities and science independently under the mentorship of friends. Wells authored over 75 mystery and detective stories. Her Technique of the Mystery Story (1913, 1929) remains a well-regarded study on the genre. She also wrote stories for youth and is credited for establishing the first humor anthology. A few years before her death in New York City, she published an autobiography, The Rest of My Life (1937).
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