Grand Haven Daily Tribune  May 4, 1898


It Cost So Little.


It cost so little to be kind,

Especially unto our own.

And yet, how often do we find,

We’ve been unkind in look, or tone!

I’ve wondered, often, why it was,

That very friends, sometimes forget;

And say―without sufficient cause,

So many things which they regret!


It costs so much to be unkind

To those whom we should not distress;

Because love is not so blind,

It cannot see unfaithfulness!

I often think that some are prone

To frown, and sulk, and be ill bred;

To utter words―that when alone

They so much wish they had not said!


It costs so little, to bestow

A pleasant look, a tender smile;

And they make friends where’er we go,

And we are happier the while:

A kindly greeting when we meet,

And benedictions when we part;

All tend to make our friendships sweet,

And fills with sunshine every heart.


How seldom do we give a thought

To how our hasty speeches sound!

Or to harm they may have wrought―

To how they sting, or how they wound!

Oh, husband!  Smooth with tender grace

The furrows on that forehead fair.

Leave naught but smiles upon the face,

Which thoughtless words have written there!


Speak kindly words, or none at all,

Unto the woman you have wed;

Say nothing that you would recall,

On the morrow, if she were dead!

If carelessly you wound her heart,

By sharp words said, or cross looks given;

Be sure you do not depart

Until you are by her forgiven!


A smile is but a trifling thing―

‘Tis not so very much to give,

But O, it does such sweetness bring―

Such gladness to the life we live;―

A single word, if rightly spoken,

Will almost lift a soul from hell!

Quickens hope in spirits broken;

And angry storms of passion quell!


A single look, oft has the power

To make, or break a human life!

It sways and charms us for the hour.

And leads to peace, or else to strife!

A single deed of kindness done,

Has often saved a priceless soul!

A sinful nature may be won,

And brought within its sweet control.


A touch, in real anger given,

Might cause the human heart to break!

While it would be like dews from heaven,

If only done for love’s sweet sake!

A smile, a word, a look, a touch―

A kindly deed―a tender thought:

Cost but little―but are worth much―

And oh, what magic have they wrought!


Were I to see one soul in grief,

And still to leave it comfortless;

How could I ask God for relief,

In my affliction and distress?

If I could cheer a troubled heart,

And still should wrongly decline;

Would God remove the pain, and smart,

Which might afflict this heart of mine!


That day is lost, wherein we fail

To help a burdened, fainting brother;

Our prayers for aid will not avail,

If we refuse to aid another!

Should we see want, and sore distress,

And still not aid, by deed, or word;

We may―in utter helplessness―

Cry loud for help, and not be heard!


Grand Haven, Mich., April 11, 1898.



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