|Let your speech be the thoughts of your soul,
"What they say" is burdened with lies;
Never tarnish your love for the truth,
In repeating the rumor that flies.
For despised is the man who will steal
The good name his neighbor may wear;
It will profit him nothing to take,
While a curse will his soul ever bear.
Once this garment of righteousness soiled,
Stains upon it forever will stay;
Let your lips never carry the smutch,
That will rot in eternal decay.
"What they say" has brought sorrow and pain,
To the innocent, just, and the pure;
Don't number yourself with the throng
Common decency cannot endure.
__James A. DeMoss
James A. DeMoss
(Thayer, Kansas: ___. 1892)