Great Man by Samuel Coleridge:
Honor or wealth with all his worth and pains!
It sounds like stories from the land of spirits
If any man obtain that which he merits
Or any merit that which he obtains.”Reply to the AboveFor shame, dear friend, renounce this canting strain!
What would’st thou have a good great man obtain?
Place? titles? salary? a gilded chain?
Or throne of corses which his sword had slain?
Greatness and goodness are not means, but ends!
Hath he not always treasures, always friends,
The good great man? three treasures, LOVE, and LIGHT,
And CALM THOUGHTS, regular as infant’s breath:
And three firm friends, surer that day and night,
HIMSELF, his MAKER, and the ANGEL DEATH!
This is one of my favorite works of Coleridge. The style of writing, though old, is convincing in its language. The practicality of the poem goes hand in hand with reality.
According to a certain individual or a certain crowd, a good man never gets the wealth or the fame he deserves. He toils and works very hard but is not repaid on the same scale.
The Poet Answers to this:
How can one judge a good man based on the rewards he receives. What should he obtain to suit his merit? A high rank, a huge salary or a throne made of corpses? Goodness is not the means to earn awards, rather, it is the fruit, the prize itself.
Great Man by Samuel Coleridge
However, a good man has treasures in the form of love, light and calm thoughts. A good man has three true friends – himself, his Maker and his death.
He does good for others no matter what the circumstances, he trusts the Lord Almighty and has faith in Him. And when the time comes, he awaits Death to carry him off, peacefully.