Sunday, March 10, 2013

Sunday, March 10, 2013


How should I be the master of my ways
When every nerve is vibrant to the sweep
Of dreams that fill the measure of my days—
Too rare to lose and past all power to keep.
How should I know what it were well to do
When every path has its alluring strain,
Each towering crest its world-revealing view
Of realms for him that has the will to reign;
And while I waver, lo! this earthly shard,
Wherein is breathed the swift compelling fire,
Breaks with the ardor it was shaped to guard.
Yet, ever striving, humbly I aspire
Ere all be spent, with reverent hands to light
A guiding star on some hope-kindling height.

Peter McArthur (born March 10, 1866)

A Great Day

It is a great day, an expansive day, a large day. The first thing that impressed me about it was its size. I know it is not customary to describe a day in terms of space, but there seems to be no way out of it. This is not a day of the kind that can be enjoyed in a house, or a field, or even within the rim of the horizon. It reaches up to the great neighbourly sun, and spreads as wide as the imagination. It is a day that overwhelms me, but, on thinking it over, I have found the key to its mystery. When I got up this morning it was the sun that first fixed my attention. It came bustling over the horizon with the air of one about to start spring house-cleaning. It awakened the south wind, plucked the myriad icy fingers from the little rivulets and flooded the world with light and warmth. But it is hardly exact to speak of the sun as house-cleaning. It is really building a new home and using only the foundations and framework of the old. It is upholstering the hills, decorating the woods, and refurnishing the fields. In a few days it will re-carpet the earth and tack down the green breadths with brass-headed dandelions. When that work is done we can get down to a consideration of the buds and flowers and birds and the exquisite little things of spring. Today the invitation is to have an outing with the universe. Only the sun and his work are worth considering.

Peter McArthur (born March 10, 1866)

Out-of-Tune Speech

There is speech which is all salt, with no grace, — withering wit, stinging sarcasm, covert innuendo: words that sound kind and sheath their point only that it may pierce the deeper, poisoned arrows tipped with honey; and these often from persons of blameless life, sometimes under the pretense of candor. Yet how harshly out of tune with the law of the Lord, that is perfect; the statutes of the Lord, that are right; the commandment of the Lord, that is pure! Equally out of tune is the talk about others to willing ears, when it is not true, just, considerate, and kind; when it assumes for conduct the worst construction, when it gives currency to what may be concealed without harm, when it spreads censorious rumours which it cannot verify. Such words leave a bitter taste in the mouth.

Under the same head of harsh discord, come all these utterances of peevishness, ill-temper, irritability, by which, if ourselves out of gearing with things as they are, we are prone to diffuse our discomfort, to spread the contagion of our disordered nerves, and to take care that those about us shall be no happier than we are!

Andrew Preston Peabody (died March 10, 1893)

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