Patience – E. B. Browning (Powerful Life Poetry)

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Read by Melba Sibrel

Of all female poets in the 19th century, none was more admired for the independence and courage of her views than Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

'Patience Taught By Nature' was written by Browning as a reminder to readers that there is a whole world beyond one's own that is uninfluenced by the dreary, everyday problems of human life.

Full Poem:

“O Dreary life!” we cry, “O dreary life!”
And still the generations of the birds
Sing through our sighing, and the flocks and herds
Serenely live while we are keeping strife
With Heaven’s true purpose in us, as a knife
Against which we may struggle. Ocean girds
Unslackened the dry land: savannah-swards
Unweary sweep: hills watch, unworn; and rife
Meek leaves drop yearly from the forest-trees,
To show, above, the unwasted stars that pass
In their old glory. O thou God of old!
Grant me some smaller grace than comes to these;—
But so much patience, as a blade of grass
Grows by contented through the heat and cold.

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  1. I’m a big fan of Mrs Browning. Her “Cry of the Children” is a phenomenal poetic work!

  2. This seems more a prayer than a poem… Perhaps a lost psalm hymned by David as he wearied of this all too temporal toil, then, breathing a quiet breath, gave remembrance to his God, the Adored and the Adoring, in humble thankfulness for the rain of blessing that watered and soothed the landscape of his soul…

    It might be well, to mark this so that in times when one might opine a parched nature and sadness in one’s heart, that they might pause to taste again the sweetness and correctness of this well spoke lines.

  3. Message to you:
    I like you because when others tuck tails an run you stay and not just stay but you always win.

    From Knight.

  4. Here’s the latest addition to the Powerful Life Poetry series! Would you like to hear from more of our female voices?

  5. “If thou must love me,
    Let it be for naught except
    For love’s sake only.”
    – E. B. Browning.

    • A creature may forget to weep who bore thy comfort long and lose thy love thereby.

    • Speak not the lines that others write but look at the tablet that is your own heart and speak in prayer that which is written there…(Wm Harrell)

  6. “Good night, good night!
    Parting is such sweet sorrow,
    That I shall say good night
    Till it be tomorrow.”

    – William Shakespeare

  7. The most generous phrase that was my fuel
    “Be patient “… thanks, illimate thanks dear…

  8. “If you’re not annoying
    you’re not alive.
    – Margaret Atwood.

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