The Inevitable – A Poem by Sarah Knowles Bolton

The Inevitable - A Poem by Sarah Knowles Bolton
This entry is part 11 of 14 in the series Poetry and Management

Published in 1895, The Inevitable is one of the most significative poems by American writer Sarah Knowles Bolton, also serving as title of her last poetry collection 1895. The author was a strong adovate for women’s education, bot in the USA and aborad, also thanks to her frequent travelling.

This is the eleventh contribution to my Poetry & Management collectionPoetry has always been one of my favourite forms of expressions, probably one of the eclectic sides of my multipotentialite trait. I feel it can be really useful as support in our management and leadership quests, as it is probably one of the greatest tools of sense-making and self-expression. Which is why I will be sharing more of these over time.

The Inevitable

I like the man who faces what he must
With step triumphant and a heart of cheer; 
Who fights the daily battle without fear; 
Sees his hopes fail, yet keeps unfaltering trust
That God is God; That somehow, true and just, 
His plans work out for mortals; not a tear
Is shed when fortune, which the world holds dear, 
Falls from his grasp; better, with love, a crust
Than living is dishonor; envies it, 
Nor loses faith in man; but does his best, 
Nor even murmurs at his humbler lot; 
But with a smile and words of hope, gives zest
To every toiler; he alone is great
Who by a life heroic conquers fate.

Sarah Knowles Bolton

Source: The Inevitable and other Poems. (New York, 1895)

A Short Comment

This poem is about willingness and achievement, dedication and purpose. It moves away from the idea that ther is an inevitabel fate, but rather celebrates the human being capability to face what he must, fighting the daily battle without fear and is able to continue fighting also as he fails. The author is a fervent Christian, and you can trace this in the words about the role of God. Yet she attributes also roles for man’s fortune, love, honor. He alone is great / Who by life heoric conquers fate.

I chose this poem because of the intense energy it displays in showing the role of addressing change and (mis)fortune. Too often we see ourselves limited by the outisde sources of influence, whereas instead we can fight back, and amplify our own spehere of influence, against odds and what we perceive as faith. This is not about the idea of self-made man, but about the understanding of daily challenges that too often lower our energies and create negativity. There’s a role for positivity and beautiful energy flows in conquering our own fate.

Thus, inevitable is not accepting passively what emerges from around us, but draing intentionally an inevitable positive future.

What do you think of this poem? Write a Comment below.

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Cover Image: Sarah Knowles Bolton Source: wikimedia

Series Navigation<< A Builders’ Lesson – A Poem by John Boyle O’ReillyThinking – A Poem by Walter D. Wintle >>
  1. Avatar of Lisa Barrett
    Lisa Barrett

    What a beautiful work. While reading it I thought of my late husband. He was a wonderful man, a Christian, and so upbeat. He was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2004, later found to be from Agent Orange due to his Army service in Vietnam. He was never bitter about any of it, was proud he had enlisted, and always said his service was the best, smartest thing he ever did. This poem described his outlook as well as his understanding of our gracious heavenly Father.
    What a beautiful work this is, and thank you for presenting it.

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