THE WAY OF THE WORLD

By: Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Laugh and the world laughs with you;
Weep and you weep alone
This grand old earth must borrow its mirth,
It has troubles enough of its own.

Sing and the hills will answer,
Sigh, it is lost on the air,
The echos bound to a joyful sound
But shrink from voicing care.

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.

There is room in the halls of pleasure
For a long and lordly train,
But one by one we must all file out
Through the narrow aisles of pain.

Feast and your halls are crowded,
Fast and the world goes by,
Succeed and give, ‘twill help you live
But no one can help you die.

Rejoice and men will seek you,
Grieve and they turn and go;
They want full measure for all your pleasure,
But they do not want your woe!

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