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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Nostalgia Falls Like Rain

I am still feeling the lingering effects of nostalgia for the old cottage that prompted my late post yesterday here on THE SHOCK. And that is perfectly acceptable to me....I like thinking about that time and place, I will always cherish those memories and have no regrets. I think how fortunate I was to grow up spending the majority of my summer's here and that was also time spent with my Grandmother. She was one of the most influential people in my life and I really benefited from spending my summers here as a young teenager. Often it was just her and I here during the week....that time talking together was just priceless.

She very much encouraged my love of history, literature and the arts in general. And though she was very much a product of the Victorian Era...I think deep down she really liked the fact that I chose to be different then most people and didn't hide my uniqueness. She often commented to me about such things.

One last memory here before I have to leave for town. My Grandmother used to love the fact that I would always ask her to recite poetry before dinner. It would generally be some old classic by Tennyson or Rudyard Kipling.."IF" being one of her and my favorites. It still is my one of my favorite poems...

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream---and not make dreams your master;
If you can think---and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build'em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings---nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And---which is more---you'll be a Man, my son! 

(Photo of Rudyard Kipling)


  1. Thank you for posting that! I've never read that poem and it's lovely.

  2. One of my absolute favorite poems of all time...