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C.D. Warner, et al., comp. The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

A Winter’s Tale

By Joseph Rodman Drake (1795–1820)

From ‘The Croakers’

  • “A merry heart goes all the way,
  • A sad one tires in a mile-a.”

  • THE MAN who frets at worldly strife

    Grows sallow, sour, and thin;

    Give us the lad whose happy life

    Is one perpetual grin:

    He, Midas-like, turns all to gold;

    He smiles when others sigh;

    Enjoys alike the hot and cold,

    And laughs through wet and dry.

    There’s fun in everything we meet;

    The greatest, worst, and best

    Existence is a merry treat,

    And every speech a jest:

    Be ’t ours to watch the crowds that pass

    Where mirth’s gay banner waves;

    To show fools through a quizzing glass,

    And bastinade the knaves.

    The serious world will scold and ban,

    In clamor loud and hard,

    To hear Meigs called a Congressman,

    And Paulding called a bard:

    But come what may, the man’s in luck

    Who turns it all to glee,

    And laughing, cries with honest Puck,

    “Good Lord! what fools ye be!”