Monday, November 23, 2009


I had to learn this poem and recite it in front of my seventh grade class. This poem is always on my mind. It feeds me when I am hungry. It picks me up when I am down. Funny how things never leave you.


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeoning of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Through the eyes of a child

Begging and pleading, my three-year-old niece pulls my arm as she sees the colorful wonder before her. The excitement bubbles out of her small frame. Unable to contain herself, she jumps in place as she looks at the six foot mouse come from his safe haven. Other children start to run to the mouse with lightening in their steps. Screams of pure bliss fill the restaurant. Cameras are flashing as adults try to capture the innocence of this moment. That moment when joy makes the world stand still.

My niece starts to shout at the top of her lungs. She is unaware that her mother had to beg Peter and rob Paul for this occasion. She doesn't see the pain of society's woes that awaits past the balloons and out the front doors. She is oblivious to war and hate. She can't contrast life and death. She doesn't know about politics or religion. All she sees is a six foot mouse and children clamoring to get his attention.

As I look around at this one point in time, I remember to cherish all of her childhood moments. Trying to see what she sees; trying not to realize that happiness can be fleeting.

"AUNTIE...can we go play now?"
"Yes, my love, let's go play."