Thomas Bracken

(21 December 1843 – 16 February 1898 / Clones, County Monaghan)

Not Understood


Not understood, we move along asunder;
Our paths grow wider as the seasons creep
Along the years; we marvel and we wonder
Why life is life, and then we fall asleep
Not understood.

Not understood, we gather false impressions
And hug them closer as the years go by;
Till virtues often seem to us transgressions;
And thus men rise and fall, and live and die
Not understood.

Not understood! Poor souls with stunted vision
Oft measure giants with their narrow gauge;
The poisoned shafts of falsehood and derision
Are oft impelled 'gainst those who mould the age,
Not understood.

Not understood! The secret springs of action
Which lie beneath the surface and the show,
Are disregarded; with self-satisfaction
We judge our neighbours, and they often go
Not understood.

Not understood! How trifles often change us!
The thoughtless sentence and the fancied slight
Destroy long years of friendship, and estrange us,
And on our souls there falls a freezing blight;
Not understood.

Not understood! How many breasts are aching
For lack of sympathy! Ah! day by day
How many cheerless, lonely hearts are breaking!
How many noble spirits pass away,
Not understood.

O God! that men would see a little clearer,
Or judge less harshly where they cannot see!
O God! that men would draw a little nearer
To one another, -- they'd be nearer Thee,
And understood.

Submitted: Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
1 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Not Understood by Thomas Bracken )

Enter the verification code :

  • John Sands (12/27/2007 5:23:00 PM)

    This was the first poem that I ever heard and learnt. My father taught it to me when I was just a little boy and it has had a profound impact on my life. I am now 59 years old. (Report) Reply

  • Jon L (6/8/2005 1:01:00 AM)

    Found this poem in the back of my Grandmothers bible (1912)
    In a time of great trials, I loved it. (Report) Reply

Read all 2 comments »

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Foolish Ghosts, Pijush Biswas
  2. आदुंगारिनिसिम, Bahadur Basumatary
  3. Dancing on a Moonlit Night, Ronald Chapman
  4. Time For The Heart, Naveed Akram
  5. Lonely Rose, Ronald Chapman
  6. Grandmother Dickey, Kate Harrington
  7. Hey There Girl, Ronald Chapman
  8. Gone To Sleep, Kate Harrington
  9. Korea! Always In My Dreams, Ronald Chapman
  10. Young Liars With Medallions, Naveed Akram

Poem of the Day

poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Young Love lies sleeping
In May-time of the year,
Among the lilies,
Lapped in the tender light:
White lambs come grazing,
White doves come building there:
...... Read complete »

   

Member Poem

[Hata Bildir]