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Song of Life

From the Grand Forks Daily Herald, February 20, 1915. By Charles Mackay.

A traveler on a dusty road
    Strewed acorns on the lea;
And one took root and sprouted up,
    And grew into a tree.
Love sought its shade at even-time,
    To breathe its early vows;
And Age was pleased, in heights of noon,
    To bask beneath its boughs.
The dormouse loved its dangling twigs,
    The birds sweet music bore—
It stood a glory in its place,
    A blessing ever more.

A little spring had lost its way
    Amid the grass and fern;
A passing stranger scooped a well
    Where weary men might turn.
He walled it in, and hung with care
    A ladle on the brink;
He thought not of the deed he did,
    But judged that Toil might drink.
He passed again, and lo! the well,
    By summer never dried,
Had cooled ten thousand parched tongues,
    And saved a life beside.

A nameless man, amid the crowd,
    That thronged the daily mart,
Let fall a word of hope and love,
    Unstudied from the heart—
A whisper on the tumult thrown,
    A transitory breath,
It raised a brother from the dust,
    It saved a soul from death.
O germ! O fount! O word of love!
    O thought at random cast!
Ye were but little at the first,
    But mighty at the last.

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