Do You Wish The World Were Better? ~ Poem by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Do you wish the world were better?
Let me tell you what to do.
Set a watch upon your actions,
Keep them always straight and true.
Rid your mind of selfish motives,
Let your thoughts be clean and high.
You can make a little Eden
Of the sphere you occupy.

  Do you wish the world were wiser?
Well, suppose you make a start,
By accumulating wisdom.

In the scrapbook of your heart;
Do not waste one page on folly;
Live to learn, and learn to live.
If you want to give men knowledge
You must get it, ere you give.

  Do you wish the world were happy?
Then remember day by day
Just to scatter seeds of kindness
As you pass along the way,
For the pleasures of the many
May be ofttimes traced to one.
As the hand that plants an acorn
Shelters armies from the sun.

Ella Wheeler Wilcox.

“The Question” Poem by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

“Beside us in our seeking after pleasures,
   Through all our restless striving after fame,
Through all our search for worldly gains and treasures,
   There walketh one whom no man likes to name.
Silent he follows, veiled of form and feature,
   Indifferent if we sorrow or rejoice,
Yet that day comes when every living creature
   Must look upon his face and hear his voice.

When that day comes to you, and Death, unmasking,
   Shall bar your path, and say, “Behold the end,”
What are the questions that he will be asking
   About your past?  Have you considered, friend?
I think he will not chide you for your sinning,
   Nor for your creeds or dogmas will he care;
He will but ask, “From your life’s first beginning
   How many burdens have you helped to bear?”

Excerpt From
Poems of Power
Ella Wheeler Wilcox