Solitude

Original Text: 
Poems by Ella Wheeler Wilcox (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1919): 92-93. PS 3310 A2 1919 York University Library
1Laugh, and the world laughs with you;
2    Weep, and you weep alone;
3For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth,
4    But has trouble enough of its own.
5Sing, and the hills will answer;
6    Sigh, it is lost on the air;
7The echoes bound to a joyful sound,
8    But shrink from voicing care.
9Rejoice, and men will seek you;
10    Grieve, and they turn and go;
11They want full measure of all your pleasure,
12    But they do not need your woe.
13Be glad, and your friends are many;
14    Be sad, and you lose them all, --
15There are none to decline your nectared wine,
16    But alone you must drink life's gall.
17Feast, and your halls are crowded;
18    Fast, and the world goes by.
19Succeed and give, and it helps you live,
20    But no man can help you die.
21There is room in the halls of pleasure
22    For a large and lordly train,
23But one by one we must all file on
24    Through the narrow aisles of pain.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
1999
Rhyme: