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The Lamp of Learning

From the Rock Island Argus, June 29, 1914. By Henry Howland.

The preacher looks out over empty pews,
    The scholar sits unnoticed and alone;
The poet, collarless and needing shoes,
    Sings soulfully, unheeded and unknown.

The actor who was born to grace the stage
    Reads splendidly the lines penned by the bard,
But no one notices his noble rage,
    He is a creature robbed of all regard.

The artist who has striven well and long
    Walks through the empty gallery and sighs;
His canvases attract no eager throng,
    And hunger dulls the luster of his eyes.

The halls of art are desolate and drear,
    The sacred lamp of learning feebly glows;
Round roped arenas people wildly cheer,
    Or overcrowd the moving picture shows.

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