A treat from Edgar Allan Poe (born Edgar Poe; January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849)
A Dream Within A Dream by Edgar Allan Poe
Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow–
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.
I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand–
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep–while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?
Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic walls
Where words come out from the depth of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.
William Butler Yeats (13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939)
Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.
He will have to learn I know,
that all men are not just,
all men are not true.
But teach him also that
for every scoundrel there is a hero,
that for every selfish politician,
there is a dedicated leader.
Teach him that for every enemy,
there is a friend.
It will take him time I know.
But teach him if you can
that a dollar earned is
of far more value
than five found.
Teach him to learn to lose.
And also to enjoy winning.
Steer him away from envy, if you can,
teach him the secret of quiet laughter.
Let him learn easily that
the bullies are the easiest to lick.
Teach him if you can, the wonder of books
But also give him quiet time to ponder
the eternal mystery of birds in the sky,
bees in the sun, and
flowers on a green hillside.
In school, teach him
it is far more honourable to fail than to cheat.
Teach him to have faith in his own ideas,
even if everyone tells him they are wrong.
Teach him to be gentle with gentle people,
and tough with the tough.
Try to give my son the strength
not to follow the crowd,
when everyone is getting on the band wagon.
Teach him to listen to all men.
But teach him also to filter all he hears
on a screen of truth,
and take only the good that comes through.
Teach him if you can
how to laugh when he is sad.
Teach him there is no shame is tears.
Teach him to scoff at cynics
and to beware of too much sweetness.
Teach him to sell his brawn and brain
to the highest bidders,
but never to put a price tag
on his heart and soul.
Teach him to close his ears to a howling mob.
and to stand and fight if he thinks he is right.
Treat him gently, but do not cuddle him,
because only the test of fire makes fine steel.
Let him have the courage to be impatient.
Let him have the patience to be brave.
Teach him always to have sublime faith in himself
because then he will always have
sublime faith in mankind.
This is a big order
but see what you can do.
He is such a fine fellow,
By Abraham Lincoln
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;
If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools;
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!