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Patience Taught by Nature

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

‘O DREARY life,’ we cry, ‘O dreary life!’ 

And still the generations of the birds 

Sing through our sighing, and the flocks and herds 

Serenely live while we are keeping strife 

With Heaven's true purpose in us, as a knife 

Against which we may struggle! ocean girds 

Unslackened the dry land, savannah-swards 

Unweary sweep,—hills watch, unworn; and rife 

Meek leaves drop yearly from the forest-trees, 

To show above the unwasted stars that pass 

In their old glory. O thou God of old, 

Grant me some smaller grace than comes to these!— 

But so much patience as a blade of grass 

Grows by, contented through the heat and cold.


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