Archive for September 13th, 2009

Hitch Your Wagon, But Stay Out of The Clouds

September 13, 2009
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Living on the Wagon Pole.

When Emerson said “Hitch your wagon to a star,” he meant, of course, that the wheels of the wagon should roll on earth, but that the force which pulled it along should be higher and nobler than mere worldliness. It was a good thought excellently expressed, and when carried out it leads to success.

There are some people, however, who in their efforts to hitch their wagon to stars, elevate themselves on the wagon poles until they reach convenient clouds, upon which they crawl, and spend the remainder of their lives midway between heaven and earth.

A man who passes away his life in this suspended condition is a very curious character. He is just high enough up to look down with a cold, aristocratic condesension on the rest of mankind, and he is just low enough down for mankind to see that he is only an ordinary member of the human race.

It is not a very graceful position, and the people generally are disposed to criticise the man occupying it; but the suspended genius, propped up by his inordinate vanity, and blinded by the haziness of his surroundings, sees only himself, and imagines that, like Alexander Selkirk, he is monarch of all he surveys. All the time the people below laugh at his antics, and the angels above, doubtless, weep.

Baltimore American.

Wisconsin Labor Advocate, (La Crosse, WI) Vol.1, no.51, p.2 (August 6, 1887)