by Edgar Guest
I have to live with myself, and so,
I want to be fit for myself to know;
I want to be able as days go by,
Always to look myself straight in the eye;
I don’t want to stand with the setting sun
And hate myself for the things I’ve done.
I don’t want to keep on a closet shelf
A lot of secrets about myself,
And fool myself as I come and go
Into thinking that nobody else will know
The kind of man I really am;
I don’t want to dress myself up in sham.
I want to deserve all men’s respect;
But here in this struggle for fame and pelf,
I want to be able to like myself.
I don’t want to think as I come and go
That I’m for bluster and bluff and empty show.
I never can hide myself from me,
I see what others may never see,
I know what others may never know,
I never can fool myself — and so,
Whatever happens, I want to be
Self-respecting and conscience free.
Definition of “Pelf” – Money, Riches
Example of using pelf – “a politician who seems more interested in pelf than in policy”
Once we resolve this issue with ourselves we attain true freedom. Edgar said in the one line, “I want to deserve all men’s respect;”. This is my goal, not for everyone to like me, but to command respect of my fellow man by my actions.
For to have someone like me I must play to their emotions. Which will change depending on so many factors in our daily lives. The weather, amount of sleep, hunger, stuffed, a death in their family, bad grades, stuck in traffic… The list is endless of the things that will effect another’s mood. I have no control over these events in another’s life. Not to trivialize my behavior, but the person I am trying to get to like me may have had some tragic event happen and I do some little thing and they seem to be blowing it way out of proportion. Then I am put in a bad mood. Questioning my self worth.
I hold myself to a set of standards that I can look in the mirror and say to myself ” I did the best I could today and that is enough”, Then I will have the respect of everyone. Even the ones who do not like me or agree with me.
This every man can achieve. Regardless of where he finds himself. He can stand in full view of everyone with nothing to hide.
“I see what others may never see,
I know what others may never know”
These things are ready to let others see, the price they pay to see is their present pain, which their view of this part of my life will ease their pain and give them the strength to stand strong and continue on.