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Solitude
Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1850-1919)

The Rhyme Maker
Ella Wheeler Wilcox.
Ella Wheeler Wilcox
1850-1919


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NOTES:
Ella Wheeler Wilcox was a very popular poet of her day.  The poet laureate of the Temperance Movement, her first book of poetry (as Ella Wheeler, before her marriage) was published by The National Temperance Movement and Publication House.  Four of these poems are posted here*.

Very much a traditionalist in many ways, Mrs. Wilcox (she would have deplored the "Ms" designation) is said to have mellowed in her later years - like a fine wine!  Indeed, her prowess as a poet should not be judged by her "temperance poetry", which were written in her early 20's. 

Ella's most recognized poem today is the one presented here, "Solitude".  The story is told that Wilcox was on a train when she encountered a woman crying.  She tried, but was unable to console her.  Later, she wrote this poem.

- S. H. Bass    
 

more Ella Wheeler Wilcox at
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A Girl's Autumn Reverie
A Glass Of Wine*

A Tumbler Of Claret*
Comrades
Distrust
In The Cup*
Lippo
Origin Of The Liquor Dealer*
The Coquette   A/V
The Goal
The Two Glasses


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Solitude
Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1850-1919), American poet              
reading of Wilcox's Solitude

Laugh, and the world laughs with you;
Weep, and you weep alone;
For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth,
But has trouble enough of its own.
Sing, and the hills will answer;
Sigh, it is lost on the air;
The echoes bound to a joyful sound,
But shrink from voicing care.

Rejoice, and men will seek you;
Grieve, and they turn and go;
They want full measure of all your pleasure,
But they do not need your woe.
Be glad, and your friends are many;
Be sad, and you lose them all,
There are none to decline your nectared wine,
But alone you must drink life's gall.

Feast, and your halls are crowded;
Fast, and the world goes by.
Succeed and give, and it helps you live,
But no man can help you die.
There is room in the halls of pleasure
For a large and lordly train,
But one by one we must all file on
Through the narrow aisles of pain.

from Poems Of Passion (1883)


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by Ella Wheeler Wilcox



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