Philosophical

BROOK FARM

Strange dream of social good that closely binds
Unlikes together in a common aim —
That hopes for all, from hand and brain, the same,
And sets for lettered men the tasks of hinds!
Strange faith in human hearts that calmly finds
So much to trust mankind for, founds its claim
On that the want of which is human shame —
The high sincerity of stainless minds!

The hope is lost, the golden vision flown —
The rapt ideal our age could not fulfill;
Yet men are richer for the having known
That fine fatuity.  Though crowned with ill,
Its long remembrance to the world has shown
What life might be.  The dream is potent still.

New England Magazine, May 1907, p. 368

BUSINESS

What is that true business demands?
The high souled worker, one who understands
That in his toiling, he is but a part
Of wide activities; who in his heart
Rejoices in another’s prospering,
Well knowing that there is not anything
Which does not help or hurt all else that lives;
Who seeks to grasp no more than what he gives.
The world of trade cries out for him who feels
The love of brother-man, that soothes and heals
The misery of failure, envy, greed;
That hastens to supply another’s need
Of faith and courage, industry, and skill;
That conquers hate with service and good will.
We wait for men like this – a hope sublime
But not beyond our reach. So comes the time
When all will strive with zeal, and only take
What comes to them for honest labor’s sake,
When all will dwell in kindliness and find
The harmony which crowns the loving mind!

PREJUDICE

I do not like your hennaed hair;
You don’t approve the hats I wear.
I view with scorn your choice of car,
And you abhor my Western “r”.
We bow but coolly when we meet,
Or even turn and cross the street.
Yet if we’d stop and talk some day,
And parlay in a gracious way,
You might discern I’m not so bad,
And I might learn what hurt you’ve had,
To make you seem so hard and cold.
Some cordial feeling might unfold;
Your hair might count for somewhat less –
My “r” might lose its local stress.
We might gain something in the end,
For each of us might find a friend.
Such things can be. I wonder why
We are not kinder, you and I?

TIME

The clock strikes
Its barren beatings
Ruffle not the great peace
Of eternity.
Its hollow strokes
Come out from nothingness
And sink into nothingness.

What is time,
That it should be measured?
Now is the only reality,
The deathless now.
Knowing not past nor future,
Poised, placid, untouched,
Sustained in the balance of Being.

The clock strikes.
Its barrens beatings
Sound in the void
And pass.