Mary Thacher Higginson

(1844-1941 / USA)

Inheritance - Poem by Mary Thacher Higginson

WE wondered why he always turned aside
When mirth and gladness filled the brimming days:
Who else so fit as he for pleasure's ways?
Men thought him frozen by a selfish pride;
But that his voice was music none denied,
Or that his smile was like the sun's warm rays.
One day upon the sands he spoke in praise
Of swimmers who were buffeting the tide:
'The swelling waves of life they dare to meet.
I may not plunge where others safely go,--
Unbidden longings in my pulses beat.'
O blind and thoughtless world! you little know
That ever round this hero's steadfast feet
Surges and tugs the dreaded undertow.

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Poem Submitted: Monday, October 18, 2010

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