A Poem for when down and depressed

I found this on the internet on New Year's Eve last year when I had a bout of the blues (am on tablets for low mood) and was made redundant from work in the same week as was told I had PBC. It inspired me to move on and I hope it helps someone too.


Start where you stand and never mind the past,

The past won't help you in beginning new,

If you have left it all behind at last

Why, that's enough, you're done with it, you're through;

This is another chapter in the book,

This is another race that you have planned,

Don't give the vanished days a backward look,

Start where you stand.

The world won't care about your old defeats

If you can start anew and win success,

The future is your time, and time is fleet

And there is much of work and strain and stress;

Forget the buried woes and dead despairs,

Here is a brand new trial right at hand,

The future is for him who does and dares,

Start where you stand.

Old failures will not halt, old triumphs aid,

To-day's the thing, to-morrow soon will be;

Get in the fight and face it unafraid,

And leave the past to ancient history;

What has been, has been; yesterday is dead

And by it you are neither blessed nor banned,

Take courage, man, be brave and drive ahead,

Start where you stand.

Berton Braley (29 January 1882 – 23 January 1966) American Poet

4 Replies

  • What a great poem for helping anyone who is down, I took great comfort from it. Thanks for sharing Ginger_11

  • you are welcome! The internet can throw up some good stuff sometimes!!

  • This has really helped me....thank you so much Ginger. Since my DX in Jan, I have been so down! Hugs and love. X

  • Hi Geordielass, I am glad that this helped. I had just finished some CBT therapy and was feeling a bit down, when I came upon this poem when keying in "inspirational poems and sayings" into the internet. Surprising how this throws up some lovely items. I admit I am not in the least interested in poetry but this poem struck a chord right when I needed it and I now have it on my fridge door to read often when I am in the kitchen. I know that with PBC and similar conditions that it is best to go with how you feel day by day etc, but sometimes that is really difficult and you can fall into low moods. These conditions do lessen your confidence at times and words like this can hopefully be able to help pull you out of this. I also recommend SelfHelp.co.uk. They have some free online courses etc and can be useful in many ways. It has certainly helped me.

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