Page:Our Common Land (and other short essays).djvu/110

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98
A WORD ON GOOD CITIZENSHIP.

and out of frequently. Mere intercourse between rich and poor, if we can secure it without corrupting gifts, would civilise the poor more than anything. See, then, that you do not put your lives so far from those great companies of the poor which stretch for acres in the south and east of London, that you fail to hear each other speak. See that you do not count your work among them by tangible result, but believe that healthy human intercourse with them will be helpful to you and them. Seek to visit and help in parishes in which this is recognised as an end in itself.

Again, we have got our population into a state of semi-pauperism, from which individuals and societies cannot raise them merely by abstaining from gifts by guardians or withdrawing out-relief. We have accustomed them to trust to external help, and only by most patient individual care shall we raise them. Neither can we persuade donors, unaccustomed to study the future results of their acts, to