If all the end of this continuous striving
Were simply to attain,
How poor would seem the planning and contriving,
The endless urging and the hurried driving
Of body, heart and brain !
But ever, in the wake of true achieving,
There shines this glowing trail :
Some other soul will be spurred on, conceiving
New strength and hope, in its own power believing,
Because thou didst not fail.
Not thine alone the glory,--nor the sorrow,
If thou dost miss the goal ;
Undreamed-of lives, in many a far to-morrow,
From thee their weakness or their force shall borrow--
On, on, ambitious soul !
Ella Wheeler Wilcox in February Success.
[NB: this poem is nearly identical to AMBITION'S TRAIL.]
Charlotte News 22 Feb., 1901: 4.
Courtesy of John M. Freiermuth.
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