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Quiet Heroism (Poem)

His courage seemed a meager thing,
A butt for boasted might;
A weakness open to a sting,
A subject for a slight.

Some thought him capable of wrong,
Some capable of right;
Some thought him weak, and none too strong
To bear up through the fight.

They little knew how, day by day,
His passions he subdued;
And night by night in steadfast way,
His kindly powers renewed.

He gathered, in his quietude,
A will whose power gave birth
To strength, to faith, to fortitude;
To freedom of the earth.

The scoffers never knew their loss
Of gems so rare which he
Earned by long toiling with the cross
Carried triumphantly.

Their weakness—noble things undone,
And dearth of insight true;
His strength—all duties nobly done,
And others yet to do.

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John D. MacDonald

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