A dramatic ballad singer studied under a strict teacher who insisted that he rehearse day after day, month after month the same passage from the same song, without being permitted to go any further.
Finally, overwhelmed by frustration and despair, the young man ran off to find another profession.
One night, stopping at an inn, he stumbled upon a recitation contest. Having nothing to lose, he entered the competition and, of course, sang the one passage that he knew so well.
When he had finished, the sponsor of the contest highly praised his performance. Despite the student’s embarrassed objections, the sponsor refused to believe that he had just heard a beginner perform.
“Tell me,” the sponsor said, “who is your instructor? He must be a great master.” The student later became known as the great performer Koshiji.
Don’t Quit – Keep Going
By Edgar A. Guest. 1921.
When Things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and debts are high,
And you want to Smile but have to sigh.
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest, if you must, but don’t you quit.
Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As everyone of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about,
When he might have won if he’d stuck it out,
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow,
You might succeed with another blow.
Often the struggler has given up,
When he might captured the victor’s cup.
And he learned too late, when the night slipped down,
How close he was to the golden crown,
Success is failure turned inside out,
The silver tint of clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems afar,
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit,
It’s when things seem worst that you mustn’t quit.