“Ditchdigger” (a paraphrase of ideas)
I would rather look at the extant world
With unvarnished eyes, and let it wound me,
Than settle softly in dishonest sentimentality.
However, although I see variegated realities, I still choose favorites.
This: the maple tree on the river.
The river feeds like a thread through
its predetermined route, and seems solid as I: which is not very.
But we share sunlight and an open sky.
I would rather watch the world than comment on it;
I have no plans for its improvement, except for that improvement
Continually made by the sun
when it refuses to yield its seat of power to ambitious men.
Gold-miners age early and lose themselves in the strain of the chase.
I would rather dig ditches.