Poems of Experience eBook

Ella Wheeler Wilcox
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 59 pages of information about Poems of Experience.

Most blest is he who in the morning time
Sets forth upon his journey with no staff
Shaped by another for his use.  Who sees
The imminent necessity for toil,
And with each morning wakens to the thought
Of tasks that wait his doing.  Never yet
Has unearned leisure and the gift of gold
Bestowed such benefits upon the young
As need and loneliness; and when life adds
The burden of a duty, difficult,
And hard to carry, then rejoice, O soul! 
And know thyself one chosen for high things. 
Behind thee walk the Helpers.  Yet lead on! 
They only help the lifters, and they give
But unto those who also freely give. 
Not till thy will, thy courage, and thy strength
Have done their utmost, and thy love has flowed
In pity and compassion, out to all
(The worthless, the ungrateful, and the weak,
As well as to the worthy and the strong)
Canst thou receive invisible support. 
Do first thy part, and all of it, before
Asking the helpers to do aught for thee. 
For this alone the Universe exists,
That man may find himself is Destiny.


A drop of water risen from the ocean
Forgot its cause, and spake with deep emotion
Unto a passing breeze.  ’How desolate
And all forlorn is my unhappy fate. 
I know not whence I came, or where I go. 
Scorched by the sun, or chilled by winds that blow,
I dwell in space a little time, then pass
Out into the night and nothingness—­alas!’

‘Nay,’ quoth the breeze, ’my friend, that cannot be. 
Thou dost reflect the Universe to me. 
Look at thine own true self, and there behold
A world of light, all scintillant with gold.’ 
Just there the drop sank back into the wave
From whence it came.  Nay, that was not its Grave!

It lived, it moved, it was a joyous part
Of that strong palpitating ocean heart;
Its little dream of loneliness was done;
It woke to find, Self, and Cause, were one. 
So shalt thou wake, sad mortal, when thy course
Has run its karmic round, and reached the Source,
And even now thou dost reflect the whole
Of God’s great glory in thy shining soul.


Oh!  I feel the growing glory
Of our life upon this sphere,
Of the life that like a river
Runs forever and forever,
From the somewhere to the here,
And still on and onward flowing,
Leads us out to larger knowing,
Through the hidden, to the clear.

And I feel a deep thanksgiving
For the sorrows I have known;
For the worries and the crosses,
And the grieving and the losses,
That along my path were sown. 
Now the great eternal meaning
Of each trouble I am gleaning,
And the harvest is my own.

I am opulent with knowledge
Of the Purpose and the Cause. 
And I go my way rejoicing,
And in singing seek the voicing
Of love’s never-failing laws. 
From the now, unto the Yonder,
Full of beauty and of wonder,
Life flows ever without pause.

Project Gutenberg
Poems of Experience from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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