Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Longfellows' Psalm of Life

A Psalm of Life

Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Dust thou art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Find us farther than to-day.

Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act,— act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o’erhead!

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.


George said...

Thank you for this very thoughtful post. I also like this poem from Longfellow.

A Lady's Life said...

Welcome George.

Rick Watson said...

I love reading Longfellow. I bought a book by him at a used book store once. On the way out, it slipped from my hands and landed opened to one of his poems.
The lines I read as I bent over to retrieve the book were:
Live of great me all remind us
We can live our lives sublime
and in passing leave behind us
Footprints in the sands of time.


A Lady's Life said...

Rick I guess we read the same poem lol
It's a lovely poem. Something for every one.

A Lady's Life said...
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