It couldn't be done

After a thing has been done, everybody is ready to declare it easy. But before it has been done, it is called impossible. One reason why people fear to embark upon great enterprises is that they see all the difficulties at once. They know they could succeed in the initial tasks, but they shrink from what is to follow. Yet "a thing begun is half done".Moreover the surmounting of the first barrier gives strength and ingenuity for the harder ones beyond. Mountains viewed from a distance seem to be unscalable. But they can be climbed, and the way to begin is to take the first upward step. From that moment the mountains are less high. As Hannibal led his army across the foothills, then among the upper ranges, and finally over the loftiest peaks and passes of the Alps, or as Peary pushed farther and farther into the solitudes that encompass the North Pole, so can you achieve any purpose whatsoever if you heed not the doubters, meet each problem as it arises, and keep ever with you the assurance _It Can Be Done_.

  Somebody said that it couldn't be done,
    But he with a chuckle replied
  That "maybe it couldn't," but he would be one
    Who wouldn't say so till he'd tried.
  So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin
    On his face. If he worried he hid it.
  He started to sing as he tackled the thing
    That couldn't be done, and he did it.

  Somebody scoffed: "Oh, you'll never do that;
    At least no one ever has done it";
  But he took off his coat and he took off his hat,
    And the first thing we knew he'd begun it.
  With a lift of his chin and a bit of a grin,
    Without any doubting or quiddit,
  He started to sing as he tackled the thing
    That couldn't be done, and he did it.

  There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done,
    There are thousands to prophesy failure;
  There are thousands to point out to you one by one,
    The dangers that wait to assail you.
  But just buckle in with a bit of a grin,
    Just take off your coat and go to it;
  Just start to sing as you tackle the thing
    That "cannot be done," and you'll do it.

_Edgar A. Guest._

From "The Path to Home."


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