A Builder's Lesson
By John Boyle O'Reilly
"How shall I a habit break?"
As you did that habit make.
As you gathered, you must lose;
As you yielded, now refuse.
Thread by thread the strands we twist
Till they bind us neck and wrist;
Thread by thread the patient hand
Must untwine ere free we stand.
As we builded, stone by ston,
We must toil unhelped, alone,
Till the wall is overthrown.
But remember, as we try,
Lighter every test goes by;
Wading in, the stream grows deep
Toward the center's downward sweep.
Backward turn, each step ashore
Shallower is than that before.
Ah! the precious years we waste
Levelling what we raised in haste;
Doing what must be undone
Ere content or love be on!
First across the gulf we cast
Kite-borne threads, till lines are passed,
And habit builds the bridge at last!
Today in History/ National & International Days
- Colin Powell (1937- ) First African-American chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
- Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) Black educator; Wrote Up from Slavery (One of my favorite books. :-)
- 1621-Mayflower sails from Plymouth on a return trip to England.
- 1964-General Douglas MacArthur died in Washington, D.C. at age 84.