Christopher Pearse Cranch

(1815-1892 / the USA)

Sonnet Ix. - Poem by Christopher Pearse Cranch

I NEEDS must praise the natural gifts of one
Who praises not himself, nor seeks for praise;
Too unambitious for these emulous days,
When each small talent seeks the public sun,
And victors' wreaths are worn before they are won.
So true to conscience that he oft betrays
Himself, o'ervaluing standards others raise,
Or underrating what himself has done.
Who might have risen in letters or in art;
But faithful to the work he early chose,
To that he gave his time, if not his heart.
Whose genuine self begins when labors close —
When with his friends, or books, or pen, apart,
His cheerful sunset light far round him glows.

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Poem Submitted: Friday, September 24, 2010

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