McGuffey Reader and Poetry Story 43

STORY XLIII SPEAK GENTLY

1. Speak gently; it is better far
To rule by love than fear:
Speak gently; let no harsh words mar
The good we might do here.

2. Speak gently to the little child;
Its love be sure to gain;
Teach it in accents soft and mild;
It may not long remain.

3. Speak gently to the aged one;
Grieve not the careworn heart:
The sands of life are nearly run;
Let such in peace depart.

4. Speak gently, kindly, to the poor;
Let no harsh tone be heard;
They have enough they must endure,
Without an unkind word.

5. Speak gently to the erring;
Know they must have toiled in vain;
Perhaps unkindness made them so;
Oh, win them back again.

6. Speak gently: ’tis a little thing
Dropped in the heart’s deep well;
The good, the joy, which it may bring,
Eternity shall tell.

Go to Lesson 44 here.