Louis Lavater

Courage

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Two kinds of courage are there in the creed
Of simple men. The one is courage born,
Not made; enfibred in the heart, not worn
Above it; strong in every hour of need.
The other courage is of doubtful breed,
For cowardice itself caught on the thorn
Of sharp despair may lead a hope forlorn
And trick the world with one swift dazzling deed.

But this that holds me in perpetual lease,
How can I give so motley thing a name?
That wins no battles nor will sue for peace,
That dares, that cries ‘Alas, my strength is gone!’
That droops, revives, that falters and fights on—
Is this thing courage or but fear of shame?

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Louis Lavater