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Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be,
The last of life, for which the first was made:
Our times are in His hand
Who saith “A whole I planned,
Youth shows but half ; trust God: see all, nor be

afraid !”

Not that, amassing flowers,
Youth sighed “ Which rose make ours,
Which lily leave and then as best recall ?”
Not that, admiring stars,
It yearned “ Nor Jove, nor Mars;
Mine be some figured flame which blends, transcends

them all!”


Not for such hopes and fears
Annulling youth's brief years,

Do I remonstrate : folly wide the mark! s Rather I prize the doubt

Low kinds exist without,
Finished and finite clods, untroubled by a spark.

4. Poor vaunt of life indeed, Were man but formed to feed On joy, to solely seek and find and feast : Such feasting ended, then As sure an end to men ; Irks care the crop-full bird ?, Frets doubt the maw

crammed beast ?

Rejoice we are allied
To That which doth provide
And not partake, effect and not receive !
A spark disturbs our clod ;
Nearer we hold of God
Who gives, than of His tribes that take, I must believe.

6. Then, welcome each rebuff That turns earth’s smoothness rough, Each sting that bids nor sit nor stand but go! Be our joys three-parts pain! Strive, and hold cheap the strain ; Learn, nor account the pang; dare, never grudge the



For thence, –a paradox
Which comforts while it mocks -
Shall life succeed in that it seems to fail :
What I aspired to be,
And was not, comforts me :
A brute I might have been, but would not sink i' the



What is he but a brute
Whose flesh hath soul to suit,
Whose spirit works lest arms and legs want play?
To man, propose this test-
Thy body at its best,
How far can'that project thy soul on its lone way ?

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