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"Joyful Curmudgeon" An oxymoron?
No! I see all the beauty of God's creation and I'm joyful.  At the same time, I see all the suffering and corruption going on in the world, and feel called to help expose and end it so that we may have true peace and compassion.


Ella Wheeler Wilcox – 24 May 2008
By Mary T. Hoffman

I found this poem, “Attainment,” by Ella Wheeler Wilcox in a book of religious poetry published in 1926. Born in Johnstown Center, Wisconsin, this American poet and journalist wrote Poems of Experience; Poems of Passion; Poems of Pleasure; Poems of Sentiment; Poems of Progress; and Poems of Power. In her verse, she wrote frankly about subjects not generally discussed in American poetry at that time.

By Ella Wheeler Wilcox
(November 5, 1850 – October 30, 1919)

Use all your hidden forces. Do not miss
The purpose of this life, and do not wait
For circumstance to mold or change your fate.
In your own self lies destiny. Let this
Vast truth cast out all fear, all prejudice,
All hesitation. Know that you are great,
Great with divinity. So dominate
Environment, and enter into bliss. –
Love largely and hate nothing. Hold no aim
That does not chord with universal good.

Hear what the voices of the silence say,
All joys are yours if you put forth your claim,
Once let the spiritual laws be understood,
Material things must answer and obey.

My favorite Ella Wheeler Wilcox poem is Voice of the Voiceless. For three versions of this poem, visit: 

For a collection of poems and stories, visit: 

Go on to: Samuel Longfellow – 25 May 2008
Return to: Feeding Animals and Poop to Animals – 23 May 2008
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