Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, TO AN OPTIMIST, by ALEC JOHNSTON



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TO AN OPTIMIST, by            
First Line: The dawn was lit with promise of high doing
Last Line: These dead-sea fruits of random idleness.
Subject(s): Hope; Oxford University; Optimism


THE dawn was lit with promise of high doing,
And glamour of the laurel on our brows;
The gods gave motley for our prayer and wooing,
A sorry cap and bells for all our vows --

We dream; a little while the vision lingers,
A little while we muse a nobler strain;
Then mocks a laugh within; and from our fingers
The gold quill falls. Tom Fool is home again.

Thou, older, shrewder, and more sure in living,
How good life is, more wise in God's wise ways,
Seeing I owe thee much, do thou, forgiving
That I bring chaff that have no wreathed bays,
Take for my thanks, and with thy taking bless
These dead-sea fruits of random idleness.





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