Age of Jahiliyah

A blog of wide and varied interest, including Islam, Muslims, Poetry, Art and much more.

Archive for the day “February 16, 2011”

A Bag of Tools by R. L. Sharpe

Isn’t it strange
That princes and kings,
And clowns that caper
In sawdust rings,
And common people
Like you and me
Are builders for eternity?

Each is given a bag of tools,
A shapeless mass,
A book of rules;
And each must make—
Ere life is flown—
A stumbling block
Or a steppingstone.

Advertisements

Myself by Edgar Guest

I have to live with myself, and so,

I want to be fit for myself to know;

I want to be able as days go by,

Always to look myself straight in the eye;

I don’t want to stand with the setting sun

And hate myself for the things I’ve done.

 

I don’t want to keep on a closet shelf

A lot of secrets about myself,

And fool myself as I come and go

Into thinking that nobody else will know

The kind of man I really am;

I don’t want to dress myself up in sham.


I want to go out with my head erect,

I want to deserve all men’s respect;

But here in this struggle for fame and pelf,

I want to be able to like myself.

I don’t want to think as I come and go

That I’m bluster and bluff and empty show.

 

I never can hide myself from me,

I see what others may never see,

I know what others may never know,

I never can fool myself- and so,

Whatever happens, I want to be

Self-respecting and conscience free.

 

Lord, Make a Real Man Out of Me by Edgar Guest

This, I would like to be: braver and bolder,
Just a bit wiser because I am older,
Just a bit kinder to those I may meet,
Just a bit manlier taking defeat.
Lord, make a regular man out of me.

This I would like to be: just a bit finer,
More of a smiler and less of a whiner,
Just a bit quicker to stretch out my hand,
Helping another who’s struggling to stand.
Lord, make a regular man out of me.

This, I would like to be: just a bit fairer,
Just a bit better, and just a bit squarer,
Not quite so ready to censure and blame,
Quicker to help every man in the game.
Lord, make a regular man out of me.

This, I would like to be: just a bit truer,
Less of a wisher and more of a doer,
Broader and bigger, more willing to give,
Living and helping my neighbors to live!
Lord, make a regular man out of me.

 

It Couldn’t Be Done by Edgar Guest

Somebody said that it couldn’t be done,

But he with a chuckle replied

That “maybe it couldn’t,” but he would be one

Who wouldn’t say so till he’d tried.

So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin

On his face. If he worried he hid it.

He started to sing as he tackled the thing

That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

 

Somebody scoffed: “Oh, you’ll never do that;

At least no one ever has done it”;

But he took off his coat and he took off his hat,

And the first thing we knew he’d begun it.

With a lift of his chin and a bit of a grin,

Without any doubting or quiddit,

He started to sing as he tackled the thing

That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done,

There are thousands to prophesy failure;

There are thousands to point out to you, one by one,

The dangers that wait to assail you.

But just buckle in with a bit of a grin,

Just take off your coat and go to it;

Just start to sing as you tackle the thing

That “cannot be done,” and you’ll do it.

 

There is No Death by J. L. McCreery

There is no death! The stars go down
To rise upon some other shore,
And bright in heaven’s jeweled crown
They shine forevermore.

There is no death! The forest leaves
Convert to life the viewless air;
The rocks disorganize to feed
The hungry moss they bear.

There is no death! The dust we tread
Shall change, beneath the summer showers
To golden grain, or mellowed fruit,
Or rainbow-tinted flowers.

There is no death! The leaves may fall,
And flowers may fade and pass away–
They only wait, through wintry hours,
The warm, sweet breath of May.

There is no death! The choicest gifts
That heaven hath kindly lent to earth
Are ever first to seek again
The country of their birth.

And all things that for growth or joy
Are worthy of our love or care,
Whose loss has left us desolate,
Are safely garnered there.

Though life becomes a desert waste,
We know it’s fairest, sweetest flowers,
Transplanted into paradise,
Adorn immortal bowers.

The voice of birdlike melody
That we have missed and mourned so long,
Now mingles with the angel choir
In everlasting song.

There is no death! Although we grieve
When beautiful, familiar forms
That we have learned to love are torn
From our embracing arms–

Although with bowed and breaking heart,
With sable garb and silent tread,
We bear their senseless dust to rest,
And say that they are “dead,”

They are not dead! They have but passed
Beyond the mists that blind us here
Into the new and larger life
Of that serener sphere.

They have but dropped their robe of clay
To put their shining raiment on;
They have not wandered far away–
They are not “lost nor “gone.”

Though disenthralled and glorified
They still are here and love us yet;
The dear ones they have left behind
They never can forget.

And sometimes, when our hearts grow faint
Amid temptations fierce and deep,
Or when the wildly raging waves
Of grief or passion sweep,

We feel upon our fevered brow
Their gentle touch, their breath of balm;
Their arms enfold us, and our hearts
Grow comforted and calm

And ever near us, though unseen,
The dear, immortal spirits tread–
For all the boundless universe
Is life–there are no dead!

 

A Soul’s Soliloquy by Wenonah Stevens Abbott

Today the journey is ended,
I have worked out the mandates of fate;
Naked, alone, undefended,
I knock at the Uttermost Gate.
Behind is life and its longing,
Its trial, its trouble, its sorrow;
Beyond is the Infinite Morning
Of a day without a tomorrow.

Go back to dust and decay,
Body, grown weary and old;
You are worthless to me from today-
No longer my soul can you hold.
I lay you down gladly forever
For a life that is better than this;
I go where partings ne’er sever
You into oblivion’s abyss.

Lo, the gate swings wide at my knocking,
Across endless reaches I see
Lost friends with laughter come flocking
To give a glad welcome to me.
Farewell, the maze has been threaded,
This is the ending of strife;
Say not that death should be dreaded-
‘Tis but the beginning of life.

 

Happiness by Priscilla Leonard

Happiness is like a crystal,

Fair and exquisite and clear,

Broken in a million pieces,

Shattered, scattered far and near.

Now and then along life’s pathway,

Lo! some shining fragments fall;

But there are so many pieces

No one ever finds them all.

 

You may find a bit of beauty,

Or an honest share of wealth,

While another just beside you

Gathers honor, love or health.

Vain to choose or grasp unduly,

Broken is the perfect ball;

And there are so many pieces

No one ever finds them all.

 

Yet the wise as on they journey

Treasure every fragment clear,

Fit them as they may together,

Imaging the shattered sphere,

Learning ever to be thankful,

Though their share of it is small;

For it has so many pieces

No one ever finds them all.



Growing Old by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Little by little the year grows old,
The red leaves drop from the maple boughs;
The sun grows dim, and the winds blow cold,
Down from the distant arctic seas.

Out of the skies the soft light dies,
And the shadows of autumn come creeping over,
And the bee and the bird are no longer heard
In grove or meadow, or field of clover.

Little by little our lives grow old,
Our faces no longer are fair to see;
For gray creeps into the curls of gold,
And the red fades out of the cheeks, ah me!

And the birds that sang till our heart strings rang
With strains of hope, and joy, and pleasure,
Have flown away; and our hearts today
Hear only the weird wind’s solemn measure.

Youth and summer, and beauty and bloom,
Droop and die in the autumn weather,
But up from the gloom of the winter’s tomb,
They shall rise, in God’s good time, together.

Vases by Nan Terrell Reed

Two vases stood on the Shelf of Life

As Love came by to look,

One was of priceless cloisnne,

The other of solid common clay.

Which do you think Love took?

 

He took them both from the Shelf of Life,

He took them both with a smile;

He clasped them both with his finger tips,

And touched them both with caressing lips,

And held them both for awhile.

 

From tired hands Love let them fall,

And never a word was spoken.

One was of priceless cloisonne,

The other of solid common clay.

Which do you think was broken?

Fidelis by Adelaide Anne Procter

You have taken back the promise
That you spoke so long ago;
Taken back the heart you gave me-
I must even let it go.
Where Love once has breathed, Pride dieth,
So I struggled, but in vain,
First to keep the links together,
Then to piece the broken chain.

But it might not be-so freely
All your friendship I restore,
And the heart that I had taken
As my own forevermore.
No shade of reproach shall touch you,
Dread no more a claim from me-
But I will not have you fancy
That I count myself as free.

I am bound by the old promise;
What can break that golden chain?
Not even the words that you have spoken,
Or the sharpness of my pain:
Do you think, because you fail me
And draw back your hand today,
That from out the heart I gave you
My strong love can fade away?

It will live. No eyes may see it;
In my soul it will lie deep,
Hidden from all; but I shall feel it
Often stirring in its sleep.
So remember that the friendship
Which you now think poor and vain,
Will endure in hope and patience,
Till you ask for it again.

Perhaps in some long twilight hour,
Like those we have known of old,
When past shadows gather round you,
And your present friends grow cold,
You may stretch your hands out towards me-
Ahl You will-I know not when-
I shall nurse my love and keep it
Faithfully, for you, till then.

Post Navigation