There’s always a chance to win the crown But when we fail to give our best We simply haven’t met the test.

Sometimes I think the Fates must Grin as we denounce and insist

The only reason we can’t win

Is the Fates themselves that miss

Yet there lives on an ancient claim

We win or lose within ourselves

The shining trophies on our shelves

Can never win tomorrow’s game

You and I know deeper down

Sing your death song and die like a hero going home.

The Death Song Poem is often attributed to native American Shawnee chief and warrior Tecumseh. The poem is often referred to by different names:  Sing Your Death Song poem, die like a hero going home poem, The Indian Death Prayer, The Indian Death Poem, Live Your Life poem etc.

Tecumseh was a Native American Shawnee chief and warrior who became the primary leader of a multi-tribal confederacy that led his people to resist the expansion of the United States into Native American land. He was one of the most celebrated leaders of his time.

American literary critic, author and scholar, William Lyon Phelps ( 1865 – 1943) was a professor of English at Yale University from 1901 to 1933, where he taught a course on the Modern Novel. In a radio broadcast on April 6, 1933, he delivered “The Pleasure of Books” speech:

The habit of reading is one of the greatest resources of mankind; and we enjoy reading books that belong to us much more than if they are borrowed. A borrowed book is like a guest in the house; it must be treated with punctiliousness, with a certain considerate formality. You must see that it sustains no damage; it must not suffer while under your roof. You cannot leave it carelessly, you cannot mark it, you cannot turn down the pages, you cannot use it familiarly. And then, some day, although this is seldom done, you really ought to return it.