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Poems of Cheer/Fleeing away

My thoughts soar not as they ought to soar,
   Higher and higher on soul-lent wings;
But ever and often, and more and more
   They are dragged down earthward by little things,
By little troubles and little needs,
As a lark might be tangled among the weeds.

My purpose is not what it ought to be,
   Steady and fixed, like a star on high,
But more like a fisherman's light at sea;
   Hither and thither it seems to fly -
Sometimes feeble, and sometimes bright,
Then suddenly lost in the gloom of night.

My life is far from my dream of life -
   Calmly contented, serenely glad;
But, vexed and worried by daily strife,
   It is always troubled, and ofttimes sad -
And the heights I had thought I should reach one day
Grow dimmer and dimmer, and farther away.

My heart finds never the longed-for rest;
   Its worldly striving, its greed for gold,
Chilled and frightened the calm-eyed guest,
   Who sometimes sought me in days of old;
And ever fleeing away from me
Is the higher self that I long to be.


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1924.


The author died in 1919, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 99 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.