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Loitering with a Vacant Eye

 Loitering with a vacant eye 
Along the Grecian gallery, 
And brooding on my heavy ill, 
I met a statue standing still.
Still in marble stone stood he, And stedfastly he looked at me.
"Well met," I thought the look would say, "We both were fashioned far away; We neither knew, when we were young, These Londoners we live among.
" Still he stood and eyed me hard, An earnest and a grave regard: "What, lad, drooping with your lot? I too would be where I am not.
I too survey that endless line Of men whose thoughts are not as mine.
Years, ere you stood up from rest, On my neck the collar prest; Years, when you lay down your ill, I shall stand and bear it still.
Courage, lad, 'tis not for long: Stand, quit you like stone, be strong.
" So I thought his look would say; And light on me my trouble lay, And I stept out in flesh and bone Manful like the man of stone.

Poem by A E Housman
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Book: Reflection on the Important Things