"People do not understand me,
Their ideas are not like mine;

"People do not understand me,
Their ideas are not like mine;
All advances seem to land me,
Still outside their guarded shrine."

So you turn from simple joyance,
Losing many a mutual good,
Weary with the chill annoyance,
So to be misunderstood.

Let me try to lift the curtain
Hiding other hearts from view;
You complain, but are you certain
That the fault is not with you?

In the sunny summer hours,
Sitting in your quiet room,
Can you wonder if the flowers
Breathe for you no sweet perfume?

True, you see them bright and pearly,
With the jewelry of morn;
But their fragrance, fresh and early,
Is not through your window borne.

You must go to them, and stooping,
Call the blossoms where they live;
On your bosom gently drooping,
All their treasure they will give.

Who would guess what fragrance lingers
In verbena's pale green show!
Press the leaflet in your fingers,
All its sweetness you will know.

Few the harps Eolian, sending
Unsought music on the wind:
Else must love and skill be blending
Music's full response to find.

"But my key-note," are you thinking,
"Will not modulate to theirs?"
Seek! and subtle chords enlinking,
Soon shall blend the differing airs.

Fairly sought, some point of contact
There must be with every mind;
And, perchance, the closest compact
Where we least expect to find.

Perhaps the heart you meet so coldly
Burns with deepest lava-glow;
Wisely pierce the crust, and boldly,
And a fervid stream shall flow,

Dialects of love are many,
Though the language be but one;
Study all you can, or any,
While life's precious school-hours run.

Closed the heart-door of thy brother,
All its treasure long concealed?
One key fails, then try another,
Soon the rusty lock shall yield.

Few have not some hidden trial,
And could sympathize with thine;
Do not take it as denial
That you see no outward sign.

Silence is no certain token
That no secret grief is there;
Sorrow which is never spoken
Is the heaviest load to bear.

Seldom can the heart be lonely,
If it seek a lonelier still,
Self-forgetting, seeking only
Emptier cups of love to fill.

"T will not be a fruitless labor,
Overcome this ill with good;
Try to understand your neighbor,
And you will be understood.

~ Frances Ridley Havergal

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