"Lessons" is the third song in John Duke's song cycle Songs Out of Sorrow: Six Songs for Mezzo-Soprano. The song cycle sets the poetry of Sara Teasdale.
Songs Out of Sorrow: Six Songs for Mezzo-Soprano is included in the John Duke volume, Songs, Vol. 2, Medium Voice, published by Southern Music Company.
by Sara Teasdale
Unless I learn to ask no help
From any other soul but mine,
To seek no strength in waving reeds
Nor shade beneath a straggling pine;
Unless I learn to look at Grief
Unshrinking from her tear-blind eyes,
And take from Pleasure fearlessly
Whatever gifts will make me wise --
Unless I learn these things on earth,
Why was I ever given birth?