A Message for the Year by Elizabeth Clarke Hardy

Not who you are, but what you are,
That’s what the world demands to know;
Just what you are, what you can do
To help mankind to live and grow.
Your lineage matters not at all,
Nor counts one whit your gold or gear,
What can you do to show the world
The reason for your being here?

For just what space you occupy
The world requires you pay the rent;
It does not shower its gifts galore,
Its benefits are only lent;
And it has need of workers true,
Willing of hand, alert of brain;
Go forth and prove what you can do,
Nor wait to count o’er loss or gain.

Give of your best to help and cheer,
The more you give the more you grow;
This message evermore rings true,
In time you reap whate’er you sow.
No failure you have need to fear,
Except to fail to do your best—
What have you done, what can you do?
That is the question, that the test.

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