Oh! we are a lone, lost nation,
We, who sing your songs.
With his moods, and his desolation
The poet nowhere belongs.
We are not of the people
Who labour, believe, and doubt.
Like the bell that rings in the steeple,
We are in the world, yet out.
In the rustic town, or the city
We seek our place in vain;
And our hearts are starved for pity,
And our souls are sick with pain.
Yes, the people are buying, selling,
And the world is one great mart.
And woe for the thoughts that are dwelling
Up in the poet's heart.
We know what the waves are saying
As they roll up from the sea,
And the weird old wind is playing
Our own sad melody.
We send forth a song to wander
Like a spirit of ill or good;
And here it is heard, and yonder,
But is nowhere understood.
For the world it lives for fashion,
For glory, and gain, and strife;
And what can it know of the passion
And pain of a poet's life?
Yesterdays. By Ella Wheeler Wilcox.
London: Gay & Hancock, 1916.
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