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Onward

Charles Harpur 1813 (Windsor) – 1868 (Australia)



Have the blasts of sorrow worn thee,
Have the rocks of danger torn thee,
And thus shifted, wreck-like drifted,
Wouldst thou find a port in time?
Vain the quest! That word sublime—
  God’s great one word,
Silent never, pealeth ever,
  Onward!
Hast thou done all loving duty,
Hast thou clothed thy soul with beauty,
And wouldst rest then, wholly blest then,
In some sunny lapse of time?
Vain the hope! The word sublime—
  God’s great one word,
Silent never, pealeth ever,
  Onward!

Hast thou won the heart of glory,
Hast thou charmed the tongue of story,
And wouldst pause then for applause then,
Underneath the stars of time?
Vain the lure! That word sublime—
  God’s great one word,
Silent never, pealeth ever,
  Onward!

Truth and virtue hast thou wrought for,
Faith and freedom hast thou fought for,
And then shrinkest for thou thinkest
Paid is all thy debt in time?
Vain the thought! That word sublime—
  God’s great one word,
Silent never, pealeth ever,
  Onward!

From endeavour to endeavour,
Journeying with hours for ever,
Or aspiring, or acquiring
This, O man, is life in time,
Urged by that primal word sublime—
  God’s great one word,
Silent never, pealeth ever,
  Onward!

 

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Charles Harpur

Charles Harpur was an Australian poet. more…

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    "Onward" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 27 Oct. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/5166/onward>.

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