, , ,

Sybilla Palmifera Premium Poster

Sybilla Palmifera by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

As I riffled through old poetry anthologies, scoured the internet, and thumbed through much loved tomes, I happened upon a poem by Louisa May Alcott. I must confess, I was not aware she penned poetry. She was not prolific but her work is lovely. More importantly, most of her poems are short, the perfect length for posting. That is not to say, the poems are of less merit, they are softly introspective. One can easily imagine Jo March, from her famous novel Little Women, writing similar inspiring prose.

My Kingdom by Louisa May Alcott, 1800s

A little kingdom I possess
where thoughts and feelings dwell,
And very hard I find the task
of governing it well;
For passion tempts and troubles me,
A wayward will misleads,
And selfishness its shadow casts
On all my words and deeds.

How can I learn to rule myself,
to be the child I should,
Honest and brave, nor ever tire
Of trying to be good?
How can I keep a sunny soul
To shine along life’s way?
How can I tune my little heart
To sweetly sing all day?

Dear Father, help me with the love
that casteth out my fear;
Teach me to lean on thee, and feel
That thou art very near,
That no temptation is unseen
No childish grief too small,
Since thou, with patience infinite,
Doth soothe and comfort all.

I do not ask for any crown
But that which all may win
Nor seek to conquer any world
Except the one within.
Be thou my guide until I find,
Led by a tender hand,
Thy happy kingdom in myself
And dare to take command.