James and Mary Ford, eds. Every Day in the Year. 1902.

May 5


By Richard Watson Gilder (1844–1909)

A SOUL inhuman? No, not human all,

If human is each passion man has known:

Scorn, hate, and love; the lust of empire, grown

To such a height as did the world appal;—

If the same human soul may soar and crawl

As soared his and as crawled; if to atone

For fame consummate by colossal fall;—

If human ’tis to see friend, partisan

Turn, dastardly, the imperial hand to tear

That fed them; if through gnawing years to plan

Vengeance, and space to breathe the unfettered air—

No alien from his kind but very man

Slow perished on that island of despair.