The Sum of Things by Arthur W. Jose

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This is the sum of things...that we    
A moment live, a little see,    
Do somewhat, and are gone; for so    
The eternal currents ebb and flow.    
This is the sum of work--that man
Does, while he may, the best he can,   
Nor greatly cares, when all is done,   
What praise or blame his toils have won.   
This is the sum of fight--to find   
The links of kin with all our kind,
And know the beauty Nature folds   
Even in the simplest form she moulds.   
This is the sum of life--to feel   
Our handgrip on the hilted steel,   
To fight beside our mates, and prove
The best of comradeship and love.   
This is the sum of things--that we   
A lifetime live greatheartedly,   
See the whole best that life has meant,   
Do out our work, and go content.

First published in The Lone Hand, 1 August 1908;
and later in
The Oxford Book of Australasian Verse edited by Walter Murdoch, 1918; and
An Australasian Anthology: Australian and New Zealand Poems edited by Percival Serle, R.H. Croll and Frank Wilmot, 1927.

Author: Arthur Wilberforce Jose (1863-1934) was born in Bristol, England, and studied at Oxford University before arriving in Australia in 1882.  He taught at All Saints College in Bathurst for nine years before becoming Acting Professor of Modern Literature at Sydney University. Followiing a period of travel he returned to Australia and became a correspondent for the London "Times".  He served as a captain in the Royal Australian Navy during World War I.  He continued to write after the war and died in Brisbane in 1934.

Author reference site: Austlit, Australian Dictionary of Biography

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on August 1, 2012 10:47 AM.

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