Is It Worth While? by Joaquin Miller









Is It Worth While? 

by Joaquin Miller

Is it worth while that we jostle a brother.
Bearing his load on the rough road of life?
Is it worth while that we jeer at each other
In blackness of heart that we war to the knife?
God pity us all in our pitiful strife.

God pity as all as we jostle each other;
God pardon us all for the triumph we feel
When a fellow goes down 'neath his load on the heather,
Pierced to the heart: Words are keener than steel,
And mightier far for woe than for weal,

Were it not well, in this brief little journey
On over the isthmus, down into the tide,
We give him a fish instead of a serpent,
Ere folding the hands to be and abide
Forever and aye in dust at his side?

Look at the roses saluting each other;
Look at the herds all at peace on the plain;
Man, and man only, makes war on his brother,
And laughs in his heart at his peril and pain,
Shamed by the beasts that go down on the plain.

Is it worth while that we battle to humble
Some poor fellow down into the dust?
God pity us all! Time too soon will tumble
All of us together, like leaves in a gust,
Humbled, indeed, down into the dust.