The White Man

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The White Man
by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
From Poems of Experience (1917)

Wherever the white man’s feet have trod
   (Oh far does the white man stray)
A bold road rifles the virginal sod,
And the forest wakes out of its dream of God,
   To yield him the right of way.
For this is the law: By the power of thought,
For worse, or for better, are miracles wrought.

Wherever the white man’s pathway leads,
   (Far, far has that pathway gone)
The Earth is littered with broken creeds -
And alway the dark man’s tent recedes,
   And the white man pushes on.
For this is the law: Be it good or ill,
All things must yield to the stronger will.

Wherever the white man’s light is shed,
   (Oh far has that light been thrown)
Though Nature has suffered and beauty bled,
Yet the goal of the race has been thrust ahead,
   And the might of the race has grown.
For this is the law: Be it cruel or kind,
The Universe sways to the power of mind.

from Poems of Experience by Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1917)

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