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Walk Away From Trouble

From the Rock Island Argus, September 11, 1913. By Henry Howland.

When it seems as if there never could be any chance for you,
When the way is lost in darkness that you struggle to pursue,
    When it seems as if your gains
    Poorly pay you for your pains
And mankind is set against you, having sworn to do you ill—
    When this feeling weighs you down
    Rise and leave the cheerless town;
You can walk away from trouble if you will.

Out across the peaceful meadows and beside the greening slopes
There is tonic for the weary and a promise of new hopes,
    Every bending blade of grass
    Does its little as you pass
To inform you of fair prizes that are worth the winning still;
    Every step will make you strong,
    As your shadow moves along—
You can walk away from trouble if you will.

Why make others share your sadness when your hopes have oozed away?
Why compel them to despise you for the things you do and say?
    Even in the crowded street
    Where the restless currents meet
Courage waits for him who seeks it, pressing on past mart and mill;
    Step forth from behind the walls
    Where the shadow thickly falls—
You can walk away from trouble if you will.

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