(1822-1888 / Middlesex / England)

The Better Part

Long fed on boundless hopes, O race of man,
How angrily thou spurn'st all simpler fare!
'Christ,' some one says, 'was human as we are;
No judge eyes us from Heaven, our sin to scan;
We live no more when we have done our span.'--
'Well, then, for Christ,' thou answerest, 'who can care?
From sin, which Heaven records not, why forbear?
Live we like brutes our life without a plan!'
So answerest thou; but why not rather say,
'Hath man no second life?--Pitch this one high!
Sits there no judge in Heaven our sin to see?--
More strictly, then, the inward judge obey!
Was Christ a man like us?--Ah! let us try
If we then, too, can be such men as he!'

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Other poems of ARNOLD (62)

Comments (6)

I felt it through my spine... I have fondness for reading a poem like this cause its no ordinary its one of a kind and inspiring for poets like me whos young and a bigener
was Christ a man like us, like it.
O race of man! ! Thanks for sharing this poem with us.
The greatest gift to Rugby School, a fine scholar and poet. This poem expresses the great dilemma as Rajnish has said and is beautifully expressed. Tom Billsborough
Matthew Arnold has said that Poetry is the criticism of life! This poem is a perfect example of his famous saying!
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