Topic: Life

“Nothing but leaves”

Nothing but leaves; the spirit grieves Over a wasted life; Sin committed while conscience slept, Promises made, but never kept, Hatred, battle, and strife; Nothing but leaves! Nothing but leaves; no garnered sheaves Of life’s fair, ripened grain; Words, idle words, for earnest deeds; We sow our seeds,—lo! tares and weeds: We reap, with toil and...

By Lucy Evelina Akerman
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14 July

The Last Man

All worldly shapes shall melt in gloom, The Sun himself must die, Before this mortal shall assume Its immortality! I saw a vision in my sleep, That gave my spirit strength to sweep Adown the gulf of time! I saw the last of human mould That shall creation’s death behold, As Adam saw her prime! The...

By Thomas Campbell
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13 July

The Prospect

Methinks we do as fretful children do, Leaning their faces on the window-pane To sigh the glass dim with their own breath’s stain, And shut the sky and landscape from their view; And, thus, alas! since God the maker drew A mystic separation ’twixt those twain,— The life beyond us and...

By Elizabeth Barrett Browning
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12 July

In Prison

God pity the wretched prisoners, In their lonely cells to-day! Whatever the sins that tripped them, God pity them! still I say. Only a strip of sunshine, Cleft by rusty bars; Only a patch of azure, Only a cluster of stars; Only a barren future, To starve their hope upon; Only stinging memories Of a past that’s...

By May Riley Smith
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10 July

The Rise of Man

Thou for whose birth the whole creation yearned Through countless ages of the morning world, Who, first in fiery vapors dimly hurled, Next to the senseless crystal slowly turned, Then to the plant which grew to something more,— Humblest of creatures that draw breath of life,— Wherefrom through infinites of patient...

By John White Chadwick
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09 July

Different Minds

Some murmur when their sky is clear And wholly bright to view, If one small speck of dark appear In their great heaven of blue; And some with thankful love are filled If but one streak of light, One ray of God’s good mercy, gild The darkness of their night. In palaces are...

By Richard Chenevix Trench
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07 July

I Hear America Singing

I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear, Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be blithe and strong, The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam, The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work, The...

By Walt Whitman
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04 July

“This living hand, now warm and capable”

This living hand, now warm and capable Of earnest grasping, would, if it were cold And in the icy silence of the tomb, So haunt thy days and chill thy dreaming nights That thou would wish thine own heart dry of blood So in my veins red life might stream...

By John Keats
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28 June

The Old Stoic

Riches I hold in light esteem, And Love I laugh to scorn; And lust of fame was but a dream, That vanish’d with the morn: And if I pray, the only prayer That moves my lips for me Is, ’Leave the heart that now I bear, And give me liberty!’ Yes, as my...

By Emily Brontë
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26 June

“somewhere i have never travelled…”

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond any experience, your eyes have their silence: in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me, or which i cannot touch because they are too near your slightest look easily will unclose me though i have closed...

By E. E. Cummings
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23 June