Things That Never Die

I always believed that I’d catch up on the pile of books I have when I would no longer be a student. And now when I am working full-time, student days seemed easier when I’d have tons to study, both for classes and for the enrichment of my soul. Of course I can’t forget about the writing part.
Writing is something, I still do. I reckon the day I stop writing – that’d be the end of things for me.
But, sometimes I want to go back to the younger days without a care or foe in the world. Days when I’d stay engrossed in classics and short-story tomes when others would be out having fun.
This reminds me of a poem I once read…

Things That Never Die

The pure, the bright, the beautiful
that stirred our hearts in youth
The impulses to wordless prayer
The streams of love and truth
The longing after something lost
The spirit’s longing cry
The striving after better hopes
These things can never die

The timid hand stretched forth to aid
A brother in his need;
A kindly word in grief’s dark hour
That proves a friend indeed;
The plea for mercy softly breathed,
When justice threatens high
The sorrow of a contrite heart
These things shall never die

Let nothing pass, for every hand
Must find some work to do
Lose not a chance to waken love
Be firm and just and true
So shall a light that cannot fade
Beam on thee from on high
And angel voices say to thee
“These things shall never die.”

I have not been able to establish if these words are by Charles Dickens or Sarah Doudney (a lesser known poet from 1800s). If you know, kindly let me know.

Comments So Far..
  • Anonymous 27 February, 2006 at 6:49 pm

    I have read on many sites that Charles Dickens wrote those words.

  • Janet Parker 7 August, 2007 at 1:03 pm

    I remember this poem from Arthur Mee’s Childrens’ Encyclopaedia, and I am sure the author’s name in that book was Sarah Doudney.

  • T A RAMESH 12 August, 2007 at 8:16 am

    Charles Dickens was an out and out novelist, as far as I know. He has not written any poem, I think. So, the poem you have quoted might be by Sarah Doudney as hinted by Janet Parker. Best portions of yester years cannot be forgotten. It gives impetus in the present and hope in the future to go ahead in our pursuit of the sublime. So, soaring high to sublimity one can get the satisfaction one is longing for one day. Till then it is our duty to go after the best to get the mood to achieve the goals we have fixed earlier for getting fulfilment in life.

  • Grant 16 February, 2009 at 9:41 pm

    IT was charles Dickens, there is a song that was based off of his poem, The sheet music even said that he wrote this. even novelist write poetry, i know i do. I have also found in a coupe of literature book with this poem that says that he wrote this.

  • Gautam 16 February, 2009 at 10:05 pm

    Debate is still on..

  • Shreya 18 September, 2009 at 7:48 am

    Things that never die is by a little known poetess named Sarah Doudney. Really beautiful lines wich comes to my mind very often..

  • Gautam 18 September, 2009 at 7:59 am

    Sarah Doudney seems to be the Poet and this is also confirmed by the great Anglo-India author, Ruskin Bond in his book “Night tain at Deoli”.

  • Choir Student 4 March, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    i love this song SOO much!!! Im singing this song in choir (7th grade choir) and i want to listen to this song to rehearse…anyone know where i can listen to it?

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