The Man With A Hoe By Edwin Markham and The Proper Study Of Mankind by Alexander Pope Plus Some Random Resolution and Thoughts
The Man with a Hoe by Edwin Markham
Bowed by the weight of centuries he leans
Upon his hoe and gazes on the ground,
The emptiness of ages in his face,
And on his back, the burden of the world.
Who made him dead to rapture and despair,
A thing that grieves not and that never hopes,
Stolid and stunned, a brother to the ox?
Who loosened and let down this brutal jaw?
Whose was the hand that slanted back this brow?
Whose breath blew out the light within this brain?
Is this the Thing the Lord God made and gave
To have dominion over sea and land;
To trace the stars and search the heavens for power;
To feel the passion of Eternity?
Is this the dream He dreamed who shaped the suns
And marked their ways upon the ancient deep?
Down all the caverns of Hell to their last gulf
There is no shape more terrible than this–
More tongued with cries against the world’s blind greed–
More filled with signs and portents for the soul–
More packed with danger to the universe.
What gulfs between him and the seraphim!
Slave of the wheel of labor, what to him
Are Plato and the swing of the Pleiades?
What the long reaches of the peaks of song,
The rift of dawn, the reddening of the rose?
Through this dread shape the suffering ages look;
Time’s tragedy is in that aching stoop;
Through this dread shape humanity betrayed,
Plundered, profaned and disinherited,
Cries protest to the Powers that made the world,
A protest that is also prophecy.
O masters, lords and rulers in all lands,
Is this the handiwork you give to God,
This monstrous thing distorted and soul-quenched?
How will you ever straighten up this shape;
Touch it again with immortality;
Give back the upward looking and the light;
Rebuild in it the music and the dream;
Make right the immemorial infamies,
Perfidious wrongs, immedicable woes?
O masters, lords and rulers in all lands,
How will the future reckon with this Man?
How answer his brute question in that hour
When whirlwinds of rebellion shake all shores?
How will it be with kingdoms and with kings–
With those who shaped him to the thing he is–
When this dumb Terror shall rise to judge the world,
After the silence of the centuries?
The Proper Study of Mankind by Alexander Pope
(My all-time favorite)
Know then thyself, presume not God to scan;
The proper study of Mankind is Man.
Plac’d on this isthmus of a middle state,
A being darkly wise, and rudely great:
With too much knowledge for the Sceptic side,
With too much weakness for the Stoic’s pride,
He hangs between; in doubt to act, or rest,
In doubt to deem himself a God, or Beast;
In doubt his Mind or Body to prefer,
Born but to die, and reas’ning but to err;
Alike in ignorance, his reason such,
Whether he thinks too little, or too much:
Chaos of Thought and Passion, all confus’d;
Still by himself abus’d, or disabus’d;
Created half to rise, and half to fall;
Great lord of all things, yet a prey to all;
Sole judge of Truth, in endless error hurl’d:
The glory, jest, and riddle of the world!
Go, wond’rous creature! mount where Science guides
Go, measure earth, weigh air, and state the tides;
Instruct the planets in what orbs to run,
Correct old Time, and regulate the Sun;
Go, soar with Plato to th’empyreal sphere,
To the first good, first perfect, and first fair;
Or tread the mazy round his follow’rs trod,
And quitting sense call imitating God;
As Eastern priests in giddy circles run,
And turn their heads to imitate the Sun.
Go, teach Eternal Wisdom how to rule –
Then drop into thyself, and be a fool!
Superior being, when of late they saw
A mortal man unfold all Nature’s law,
Admir’d such wisdom in an earthly shape,
And shew’d a NEWTON as we shew an Ape.
Could he, whose rules the rapid Comet bind,
Describe or fix one movement of his Mind?
Who saw its fires here rise, and there descend,
Explain his own beginning, or his end?
Alas what wonder! Man’s superior part
Uncheck’d may rise, and climb from art to art:
But when his own great work is but begun,
What Reason weaves, by Passion is undone.
Trace Science then, with Modesty thy guide;
First strip off all her equipage of Pride,
Deduct what is but Vanity, or Dress,
Or Learning’s Luxury, or Idleness;
Or tricks to shew the stretch of human brain,
Mere curious pleasure, ingenious pain:
Expunge the whole, or lop th’ excrescent parts
Of all, our Vices have created Arts:
Then see how little the remaining sum,
Which serv’d the past, and must the times to come!
SOME NEW YEAR’s RESOLUTION:
-> I shall never bury any castles and I will never be dragged by pessimists who don’t know they are. Instead, as a vigilant Christian and battlemaiden of our Lord, I must strive to expel the demons that diminish the efficiency of communication among people. Of course, achieve all these through Christ, in His Light and for Love, who is God.
-> No more emasculation of foolish pursuers, but otherwise.
-> No more mediocrity in writing. No more worldly expression. No more superficial concerns.
-> No more robotic routines. No more!
-> Pain gives us a sense of what matters. Never miss this Light, and never act on the emotion but act on the Light.
-> Never miss the glorious beauty in EVERYTHING. Never miss God’s beauty. FULLy allow one’s self to receive and live by His Love and splendor.
-> No more dead Prose.
-> For the sake of True Sanity, never procrastinate nor waste tolerance on mediocrity!
-> I AM MAKING DOUBT MY FRIEND TODAY AND EVERY DAY IT INCESSANTLY REACHES OUT TO ME, BUT TO MAGNIFY THE GREATER GOOD ATTAINABLE ONLY OUTSIDE MEDIOCRITY.
-> And of course, try to stop smoking. Hehehehe
-> Pessimists. The best of them would dread on good things you say containing words that don’t seem pleasant to their ears. Then they will tell you to get out of the dark while missing the Light that you shed.
-> Passivity and Ennui are some of the most powerful weapons of the Evil Ones. Sometimes, passivity parties in the Patience costume while Ennui presents itself strongly as irrelevant. To see through this, like Christ, one must constantly seek God.
-> Validation is a very powerful tool for both good and bad. Likewise for invalidation. Imagination + good intentions + validation/invalidation = mountains moved.
-> Great gifts seem to be curses. Great insight, great awareness, prophecy and strange things alike that are often misused. They simply are tamed with good intentions.
-> By touching one soul, you allow that soul to touch another and another and another. See how even VIRUS can be good. So in God’s own image and likeness, for His glory, make good out of everything!
-> Tinker thoughts. Tinker sights. Tinker everything until you see none but Light.
-> God is the best Lover there is.
-> Never say NO to GREATNESS! Know that you are, and be all-out your best self, flaunting the very unique being you are that no other person in the world can be. This way, you attract the right people and spare a lot from heartache and confusion, including yourself.
-> People will offer you a lot of things, mostly what don’t even belong to them. And this is most apparent in the context of courtship.
-> Romance is sacred. If it isn’t, it isn’t romance.
-> The difference between Patience and Passivity is that patience has a next move. Passivity doesn’t.
-> Each person has a connection to another. The active Christian always finds it.