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- Poems of Power - 3/17 -


I AM

I know not whence I came, I know not whither I go; But the fact stands clear that I am here In this world of pleasure and woe. And out of the mist and murk Another truth shines plain - It is my power each day and hour To add to its joy or its pain.

I know that the earth exists, It is none of my business why; I cannot find out what it's all about, I would but waste time to try. My life is a brief, brief thing, I am here for a little space, And while I stay I would like, if I may, To brighten and better the place.

The trouble, I think, with us all Is the lack of a high conceit. If each man thought he was sent to this spot To make it a bit more sweet, How soon we could gladden the world, How easily right all wrong, If nobody shirked, and each one worked To help his fellows along!

Cease wondering why you came - Stop looking for faults and flaws; Rise up to-day in your pride and say, "I am part of the First Great Cause! However full the world, There is room for an earnest man. It had need of me, or I would not be - I am here to strengthen the plan."

WISHING

Do you wish the world were better? Let me tell you what to do: Set a watch upon your actions, Keep them always straight and true; Rid your mind of selfish motives; Let your thoughts be clean and high. You can make a little Eden Of the sphere you occupy.

Do you wish the world were wiser? Well, suppose you make a start, By accumulating wisdom In the scrapbook of your heart: Do not waste one page on folly; Live to learn, and learn to live. If you want to give men knowledge You must get it, ere you give.

Do you wish the world were happy? Then remember day by day Just to scatter seeds of kindness As you pass along the way; For the pleasures of the many May be ofttimes traced to one, As the hand that plants an acorn Shelters armies from the sun.

WE TWO

We two make home of any place we go; We two find joy in any kind of weather; Or if the earth is clothed in bloom or snow, If summer days invite, or bleak winds blow, What matters it if we two are together? We two, we two, we make our world, our weather.

We two make banquets of the plainest fare; In every cup we find the thrill of pleasure; We hide with wreaths the furrowed brow of care, And win to smiles the set lips of despair. For us life always moves with lilting measure; We two, we two, we make our world, our pleasure.

We two find youth renewed with every dawn; Each day holds something of an unknown glory. We waste no thought on grief or pleasure gone; Tricked out like hope, time leads us on and on, And thrums upon his harp new song or story. We two, we two, we find the paths of glory.

We two make heaven here on this little earth; We do not need to wait for realms eternal. We know the use of tears, know sorrow's worth, And pain for us is always love's rebirth. Our paths lead closely by the paths supernal; We two, we two, we live in love eternal.

THE POET'S THEME

What is the explanation of the strange silence of American poets concerning American triumphs on sea and land? Literary Digest.

Why should the poet of these pregnant times Be asked to sing of war's unholy crimes?

To laud and eulogize the trade which thrives On horrid holocausts of human lives?

Man was a fighting beast when earth was young, And war the only theme when Homer sung.

'Twixt might and might the equal contest lay, Not so the battles of our modern day.

Too often now the conquering hero struts A Gulliver among the Liliputs.

Success no longer rests on skill or fate, But on the movements of a syndicate.

Of old men fought and deemed it right and just. To-day the warrior fights because he must,

And in his secret soul feels shame because He desecrates the higher manhood's laws

Oh! there are worthier themes for poet's pen In this great hour, than bloody deeds of men

Or triumphs of one hero (though he be Deserving song for his humility):

The rights of many--not the worth of one; The coming issues--not the battle done;

The awful opulence, and awful need; The rise of brotherhood--the fall of greed,

The soul of man replete with God's own force, The call "to heights," and not the cry "to horse," -

Are there not better themes in this great age For pen of poet, or for voice of sage

Than those old tales of killing? Song is dumb Only that greater song in time may come.

When comes the bard, he whom the world waits for, He will not sing of War.

SONG OF THE SPIRIT

All the aim of life is just Getting back to God. Spirit casting off its dust, Getting back to God. Every grief we have to bear Disappointment, cross, despair Each is but another stair Climbing back to God.

Step by step and mile by mile - Getting back to God; Nothing else is worth the while - Getting back to God. Light and shadow fill each day Joys and sorrows pass away, Smile at all, and smiling, say, Getting back to God.

Do not wear a mournful face Getting back to God; Scatter sunshine on the place Going back to God; Take what pleasure you can find, But where'er your paths may wind. Keep the purpose well in mind, - Getting back to God.


Poems of Power - 3/17

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