Liberty and Edward Thomas
Reading Time: 2 minutes.
“Liberty” is one of the foundational concepts of the American enterprise, individual liberty in particular.
To the white-collar practitioner (and client), the concept of liberty takes on a special urgency.
Edward Thomas was born in Lambeth, London, on March 3, 1878. His books include The Woodland Life (1896), In Pursuit of Spring (1914), and Last Poems (1918). Thomas died in World War I at the battle of Arras on April 9, 1917. “Liberty” was published in Thomas’s book Poems (H. Holt & company, 1917).
by Edward Thomas (1878-1917)
The last light has gone out of the world, except
This moonlight lying on the grass like frost
Beyond the brink of the tall elm’s shadow.
It is as if everything else had slept
Many an age, unforgotten and lost
The men that were, the things done, long ago,
All I have thought; and but the moon and I
Live yet and here stand idle over the grave
Where all is buried. Both have liberty
To dream what we could do if we were free
To do some thing we had desired long,
The moon and I. There’s none less free than who
Does nothing and has nothing else to do,
Being free only for what is not to his mind,
And nothing is to his mind. If every hour
Like this one passing that I have spent among
The wiser others when I have forgot
To wonder whether I was free or not,
Were piled before me, and not lost behind,
And I could take and carry them away
I should be rich; or if I had the power
To wipe out every one and not again
Regret, I should be rich to be so poor.
And yet I still am half in love with pain,
With what is imperfect, with both tears and mirth,
With things that have an end, with life and earth,
And this moon that leaves me dark within the door.