Elizabeth Stuart Phelps Ward

Overtasked

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It was a weary hour,
I looked in the lily-bell.
How holy is the flower!
It leaned like an angel against the light;
"O soul!" it said, sighing, "be white, be white!"


I stretched my arms for rest,
I turned to the evening cloud--
A vision how fair, how blest!
"Low heart," it called, softly, "arise and fly.
It were yours to reach levels as high as I."


I stooped to the hoary wave
That wept on the darkening shore.
It sobbed to me: "Oh, be brave!
Whatever you do, or dare, or will,
Like me to go striving, unresting still."

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