The Psalm of Life

H.W. Longfellow is perhaps one of the most well known of the American poets of the nineteenth century. The magical poem “The psalm of life” was published in Voices of the Night. The early 19th century saw the greats of American literature together creating the Flowering of New England.
Longfellow is most famous for the “easy to remember “ graceful rhyming. His poems are usually about the common day to day life, the life with all its values and convictions which made it so wonderful, which made it so worth living to the fullest. Looking for the silver lining, living your life to fulfill the purpose it was meant to solve, fighting the odds with the cheerful smile and brave heart rings through this inspiring poem of his. The poem is not abstract, not too over the top, but it teaches us the most important of the lessons –live your life in the right spirit. It is about how our soul is our real identity, we may die but our soul is imperishable and permanent. Since by the means of the soul, immortality is the potential of every soul, then there should be no question of being pessimistic!!
Longfellow said about this poem-“I kept it some time in manuscript , unwilling to show it to anyone, it being a voice from my inmost heart at a time when I was rallying from depression”.
This poem has taught us how important it is to walk the path of earnest righteousness. There are ups and downs, whites and blacks, joys and sorrows but maintaining zeal and enthusiasm is very essential for leading a great life! Life is real! Life is earnest !
So here goes this amazing poem which has changed lives , and will continue doing so :
Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers ,
And things are not what they seem.
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
“ Dust thou art, to dust returnest,”
Was not spoken of the soul
Not enjoyment , and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Finds us farther than to-day.
Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave ,
Still ,like muffled drums ,are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.
In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!
Trust no future, howe’er pleasant!
Let the Past bury its dead!
Act-act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o’erhead!
Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing leave behind us
Footprints on the sand of time –
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing shall take heart again.
Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing ,
Learn to labour and to wait,
H.W. Longfellow