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ORDER AND THE BEES
(FROM "HENRY V.")
We often wish that we might do some other man's work, occupy his social or political station. But such an interchange is not easy. The world is complex, and its adjustments have come from long years of experience. Each man does well to perform the tasks for which nature and training have fitted him. And instead of feeling envy toward other people, we should rejoice that all labor, however diverse, is to one great end-it makes life richer and fuller.
HEREFORE doth heaven divide
The state of man in divers functions,
The singing masons building roofs of gold,
One star does not ask another to adore it, or amuse it; Mt. Shasta, though it towers for thousands of feet above its neighbors, does not repine that it is alone or that the adjacent peaks see much that it misses under the clouds. Nature does not trouble itself about what the rest of nature is doing. But man constantly worries about other men-what they think of him, do to him, fail to emulate in him, have or secure in comparison with him. He lacks nature's inward quietude. Calmness and peace come by being self-contained.
EARY of myself, and sick of asking
What I am, and what I ought to be,
And a look of passionate desire
O'er the sea and to the stars I send:
"Ah, once more," I cried, "ye stars, ye waters,
Still, still let me, as I gaze upon you,
Feel my soul becoming vast like you!"
From the intense, clear, star-sown vault of heaven,
In the rustling night-air came the answer:
"Unaffrighted by the silence round them,
These demand not that the things without them
"And with joy the stars perform their shining,
"Bounded by themselves, and unregardful
O air-born voice! long since, severely clear,
A LITTLE PRAYER
We should strive to bring what happiness we can to others. More still, we should strive to bring them no unhappiness. When we come to die, it is, as George Eliot once said, not our kindness or our patience or our generosity that we shall regret, but our intolerance and our harshness.
HAT I may not in blindness grope,
Know when to speak a word of hope
That tempered winds may softly blow
That through the year which lies ahead
Or profit I have tried to get.
S. E. Kiser.
A MAN'S A MAN FOR A' THAT
It is said that once at a laird's house Burns was placed at a second table, and that this rankled in his breast and caused him to write his poem on equality. He insists that rank, wealth, and external distinctions are merely the stamp on the guinea; the mam is the gold itself. Snobbishness he abhors; poverty he confesses to without hanging his head in the least; the pith of sense and the pride of worth he declares superior to any dignity thrust upon a person from the outside. In a final, prophetic mood he looks forward to the time when a democracy of square dealing shall prevail, praise shall be reserved for merit, and men the world over shall be to each other as brothers. In line 8 gowd=gold; 9, hamely homely, commonplace; II, gie give; 15, sae=so; 17, birkie fellow; 20, cuif=simpleton; 25, mak-make; 27, aboon above; 28, mauna=must not; fa'=claim; 36, gree=prize
S there, for honest poverty,
That hangs his head, and a' that?
Our toils obscure, and a' that;
What tho' on hamely fare we dine,
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine,
For a' that, and a' that,
Their tinsel show, and a' that;
Ye see yon birkie, ca'd a lord,
Wha struts, and stares, and a' that;
Tho' hundreds worship at his word,
He's but a cuif for a' that:
For a' that, and a' that,
His riband, star, and a' that,
The man of independent mind,
A prince can mak a belted knight,
Their dignities, and a' that,
The pith o' sense, and pride o' worth,
Then let us pray that come it may,
It's coming yet, for a' that,
LIFE AND DEATH
IFE! I know not what thou art,
But know that thou and I must part;
And when, or how, or where we met
I own to me a secret yet.
Life! We've been long together,
Through pleasant and through cloudy weather;
'Tis hard to part when friends are dear;
Perhaps will cost a sigh, a tear;
Then steal away, give little warning,
Choose thine own time;
Say not "Good Night"—but in some brighter clime
Bid me "Good Morning!"