Men’s lives are not their own, still less their art:
We travel different pathways, you and I,
Yet who’s to say, that one way is more smart,
Or that another, profit one thereby
More greatly as according to some mean?
All waters flow their own course, to the sea,
Carve out a path, wherein no way was seen,
As is the way of water—so do we.
We travel each our destined course, except
Destiny seem a footnote, afterthought
To life traversed; for faith is only kept
Relinquishing, instead of something sought
To motivate our movement—forward! on!
Not keeping track of what is lost or won.
For art some men care even not a fig,
Declaring it an excess baggage they
Disdain to carry, chasing something big
In dreams of power and glory—who’s to say?
One man a spendthrift, one a miser be,
One courteous and kind, the other rude;
One cheat his wealth, one eat his poverty;
One love the crowd, the other solitude.
Yet mostly, we as live between extremes,
Knowing each side of things, so fare the weather,
Knowing the dearth and the surplus of dreams
Yet never, at the same time altogether;
Achieving, at the end, some wisdom if
Fortune be had by any lucky stiff.