Talk Is Cheap

By Amos Russel Wells

When the tongue, with ready art,
Bodies forth a servile heart;
When its vows forgotten fade
Speedily as they are made;
When it raises honor high,
But its own life is a lie;
When big words from nothing leap,
“Talk is cheap,” for life is cheap.
When the tongue with carefulness
Tells the truth, nor more nor less;
When it boldly dares to speak
For the wronged and for the weak;
When with modesty and grace
Talk adorns a homely place;
When it comes from sources deep,
Talk is anything but cheap.
“Speech is silver,” sages sing;
“Silence is a golden thing.”
Other doctrine do I hold:
Talk is gold when life is gold.

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