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Emptiness Poems

Table of Contents

  1. The Emptiness by John Palmer Cumming
  2. Quite empty, quite at rest by Emily Dickinson
  3. Weariness by Mary E. Tucker

  1. The Emptiness

    by John Palmer Cumming

    The emptiness!
    Just a thinkin'—
    Thinkin' of the emptiness of human souls,
    With one foot on the low rail of the corn patch fence
    When the plovers is swinging low
    An' swoopin' up,
    An' the harvestin's done,
    An' a road's a-leadin' off and on,
    An' a river,—
    A river that's half nuts callin' somethin' at you,—
    Seems like it's then a feller knows,—
    Knows about the emptiness that needs fillin',
    Sometimes, it catches you
    Most when you're alone.
    Or when pretty girls passes,
    Or, maybe, the way milk does in your coffee
    When you're a-watchin' and watchin'
    An' pourin' it without any stirrin',
    Or it's the lights o' night time,
    The music of hauntin' things,
    Or a buddy callin' you soft like
    With a little chokin' inside,
    Or its lovin' 'thout nothin' to love.
    Or maybe it not bein' near enough for lovin' back,
    An' pretty things that ain't half so pretty when you're closer to 'em,
    Or thinkin' about a lady with somethin' sweet a-smellin' near her.
    I wonder
    What a feller'd do 'thout the emptiness,
    The great big old emptiness that needs fillin' up!
    Seems sometimes like it's a holler on the insides,
    Like when you're hungry
    For the things a feller never had,
    Or things that when you've had 'em ain't left no lingerin' benefits.
    With heaps of more days comin'
    More roads a-runnin' out and on,
    In and down,
    An' ships bobbin' in strange waters,
    An' pretty restaurants where there ain't no home dishes,
    An' the emptiness a-callin you on
    An' you answerin' and hatin'
    An' livin'.
    I reckon there ain't nothin'
    In the human soul that's bigger than the emptiness—
    The emptiness that God must 'a' give a feller—
    Give him for fillin' up.

  2. Quite empty, quite at rest

    by Emily Dickinson

    Quite empty, quite at rest,
    The Robin locks her Nest, and tries her Wings.
    She does not know a Route
    But puts her Craft about
    For rumored Springs —
    She does not ask for Noon —
    She does not ask for Boon,
    Crumbless and homeless, of but one request —
    The Birds she lost —

  3. Weariness

    by Mary E. Tucker

    Ah, is there no, no place on earth
    Where weary souls can rest?
    Are none who spring from mortal birth
    With perfect bliss e'er blest?

    Or shall we be forever longing —
    Be with wants and wishes filled;
    Craving things to earth belonging,
    Not the things that God hath willed?

    Oh!, how weary, weary, weary,
    And how long doth seem the day,
    When too sad, and lone and dreary,
    Plod we on our toilsome way?

    With not one, not one to love us,
    How can we of bliss e'er dream?
    Of the blissful heaven above us
    Can we ever catch a gleam?

    Can we long endure such sorrow
    Without longing for the day —
    Praying God that ere the morrow
    We may pass from earth away?

    Is there even one, a mortal,
    Who content with life's sad store
    Would retreat from heaven's blest portal,
    And return to earth once more?

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