The wheels keep on turning
In the heart and in the mind,
With thoughts ever churning
Of every shape and kind.
So many great conversations
On which to ponder and think,
From all the past generations
That came and went in a blink.
And yet in books both word and thought
Remain of those who lived and died,
And fools we’d be to think them naught
For new-bred thoughts of men untried.
How easy men tradition break
And some brand-new idea hail,
But oh, the terrors in its wake
The untried thought doth trail!
So I will get me to great books
And read of men gone past the stories,
That I might find the humble nooks
Avert some dangers, find men’s glories.
Alone we are, yet not alone,
For tales passed down of yonder star,
Still cheer, fill heart and home
With hope no shadow oe’r men can bar.
And by the light passed down by these
May I soon rise, and follow suit
Not “held back,” nor bound to please
But now for my charge strap my boot.
And yet the comfort it does lend
To know that men have gone before,
Who ran their race to the very end
Some well; some less, some more.
All that a man can do is “well,”
(His not to know of time nor tide),
Yet every man when rings that bell
Is called to stand, and thus be tried.
Yet it may be that burdens borne
Are made the lighter by friends of old
Who through the page of some lost tome
Reached out kindly, and through its fold
Illumine softly the trail of men
Who patiently down this road do wend
For they themselves had in their ken
A light passed on by souls that penned.