act in the living present

Some days seem to be lost in marking time.  Such days are not so satisfying … work is just work, duty fulfilled, chores completed.

Longfellow advises us in his Psalm of Life … to act in the living present …

TELL me not, in mournful numbers, 
Life is but an empty dream ! — 
For the soul is dead that slumbers, 
 And things are not what they seem.

Life is real !   Life is earnest! 
And the grave is not its goal ; 
Dust thou art, to dust returnest, 
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow, 
Is our destined end or way ; 
But to act, that each to-morrow 
Find us farther than to-day.

Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant ! 
Let the dead Past bury its dead ! 
Act,— act in the living Present ! 
Heart within, and God o’erhead !

Lives of great men all remind us 
We can make our lives sublime, 
And, departing, leave behind us 
Footprints on the sands of time ;

Footprints, that perhaps another, 
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main, 
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother, 
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us, then, be up and doing, 
With a heart for any fate ; 
Still achieving, still pursuing, 
Learn to labor and to wait.

In those mundane days … may God give insight into His holy purpose!

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This entry was posted in Public Domain Poetry, Reflection. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to act in the living present

  1. Bonnie says:

    Very wise thoughts! Thanks for posting this. It encouraged me today!

    Bonnie

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