FAVORITE POETRY


WORDS TO LIVE BY
A favorite poem of mine comes from the Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters. Masters wrote a series of Spoon River collections wherein residents of the local cemetary spoke from their graves. The following poem resonates deeply with me.
GEORGE GRAY
I have studied many times
The marble which was chiseled for me -
A boat with a furled sail at rest in a harbor.
In truth it pictures not my destination
But my life.
For love was offered me and I shrank from its disillusionment;
Sorrow knocked at my door, but I was afraid;
Ambition called to me, but I dreaded the chances.
Yet all the while I hungered for meaning in my life.
And now I know that we must lift the sail
And catch the winds of destiny
Wherever they drive the boat.
To put meaning in one's life may end in madness,
But life without meaning is the torture
Of restlessness and vague desire -
It is a boat longing for the sea and yet afraid.
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Amy Wellman
Last Update: March 15, 2001