Ella Wheeler Wilcox Quotes

Ella Wheeler Wilcox, 1850 – 1919

Born: 5 November 1850, Johnstown, Wisconsin
Died: 30 October 1919, Short Beach, Connecticut

Ella Wheeler was born on her family’s farm near Johnstown, Wisconsin, the Wheelers soon moved to Madison. Ella started writing poetry at an early age and was well known as a teenage poet, at least in Wisconsin. She married Robert Wilcox, probably in 1878, their one child died in infancy. The Wilcoxes became interested in Theosophy, New Thought, and Spiritualism, and promised that whoever died first would communicate with the survivor. Almost thirty years later, Ella was overcome by grief when Robert died in 1916 and didn’t contact her. At the turn of the century she became one of America’s most popular poets, able to support herself through the writing of poetry, but unable to please literary critics. The combination leaves one wondering if she is “a bad major poet” or “a major bad poet”, but many of her poems, and verses from them, are still popular today. After deciding she had heard from Robert she resumed writing and did volunteer work in France during WW I. She died of breast cancer at her home.

Ella Wheeler Wilcox quotes:

  • All in the dark we grope along,
    And if we go amiss
    We learn at least which path is wrong,
    And there is gain in this.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • All love that has not friendship for its base, Is like a mansion built upon the sand.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • And from the discontent of one man The world’s best progress springs.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Change is the watchword of progression. When we tire of well-worn ways, we seek for new. This restless craving in the souls of men spurs them to climb, and to seek the mountain view.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Content is not the pathway to great deeds.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Day’s sweetest moments are at dawn.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • From the discontent of man, the world’s best progress springs.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Good music is wine turned to sound.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • I fling my past behind me like a rose,
    Worn threadbare in the seams, and out of date.
    I have outgrown it.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • It ever has been since time began,
       And ever will be, till time lose breath,
    That love is a mood — no more — to a man,
       And love to a woman is life or death.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • It is easy enough to be pleasant
       When life flows by like a song,
    But the man worth while is the one who will smile
       When everything goes dead wrong.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Laugh and the world laughs with you;
    Weep, and you weep alone;
       For the sad old earth
       must borrow its mirth,
    But has trouble enough of its own.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Like the winds of the sea are the winds of fate
    As we voyage along through life,
       Tis the set of the soul
       That decides its goal
    And not the calm or the strife.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Love lights more fires than hate extinguishes.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Passion is what the sun feels for the earth
    When harvests ripen into golden birth.
        Ella Wheeler Wilcox

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