Say not the struggle nought availeth,
The labor and the wounds are vain,
The enemy faints not, nor faileth,
And as things have been they remain.
If hopes were dupes, fears may be liars;
It may be, in yon smoke concealed,
Your comrades chase e’en now the fliers,
And, but for you, possess the field.
For while the tired waves, vainly breaking,
Seem here no painful inch to gain,
Far back, through creeks and inlets making,
Comes silent, flooding in, the main.
And not by eastern windows only,
When daylight comes, comes in the light,
In front, the sun climbs slow, how slowly,
But westward, look, the land is bright.
–Arthur Hugh Clough
One thought on ““Say Not the Struggle Nought Availeth””
That was powerful. When I read most modern poetry I either get confused or so incensed that this what they call poetry nowadays I quit reading it. Perhaps I’m just getting old or, more likely, am under-educated. Maybe my literary brow isn’t high enough. While rhyming isn’t necessary for composing great poetry, it was the essence of the art in former days.