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Posts Tagged ‘If’

Today I’ve added the poem: “Don’t Quit” to my Poems page.  To be honest, I thought I’d added way back when I added “If” to the Poems page, but I stumbled upon “Don’t Quit” today and went to see if it was there and it wasn’t, so I’m correcting this error.
I first read this poem MANY years ago (back in the early 1970’s), and copied it into my journal.  Over the years, I’ve seen it on posters and T-shirts and most recently on web sites.  I have it as “Author Unknown” and many web sites refer to it this way.  I have noticed a number of sites claiming their father, mother, Grandma or whatever wrote the poem, but I’ve never seen any proof of authorship and I guess, there is none or it would have been provided by now.  I find a certain sadness in people wanting to believe their relative wrote this. Even if they wrote it out in their own handwriting, that is not “proof”.  After all, it appears in my handwriting, in my journal, from back in 1972, and that doesn’t mean I wrote it.
Anyway, it’s a beautiful and inspirational little poem and I hope you’ll take a few moments from your day to lift your spirits…
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When I was growing up, I knew of two “British” poems which seemed forever to bounce around in the back of my head as challenges – gauntlets thrown down at the foot of destiny. (I blame it on growing up in Kennedy’s “Camelot” – whether real or imagined…)  The two poems were “If“, by Rudyard Kipling, and “What I Live For” by George Linnaeus Banks.
I’ve had “If” posted on my poems page for sometime now.  I stumbled upon Banks’ poem today, so now, I’ve posted it as well.
I don’t know if all young boys think about growing up to be a man (“If” is nothing, if not a test for manhood) and what kind of man they’d want to be, but I certainly did.  I guess it comes from reading too many super-hero comics when growing up…
Anyway, read and enjoy!!
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Today, I went to see the new “DiCaprio” movie: “Inception” with my son, James.  We both really enjoyed it!  This is definitely a movie to see at a theater.  A small screen, even a 50+ inch TV will not do it justice.  The acting is terrific (and I’ve never been a DiCaprio fan) and the special effects are “Matrix” like in so much as they are integral to the movie and not just there to sell a summer action flic/movie.  This is a MUST SEE movie!!
As for the “concept” of inception, I find it amusing there is now a movie about planting ideas in people’s heads.  I always thought that is what entertainment AND education were all about…
I’ve added quite a few items to my poems / lyrics page today.  Two of them, “If” and “Invictus” are (to me) classics of the English language.  The first, (“If”) is obviously about some of the things you (any male or female) has to be able to do to consider themself a “adult”.  I’m not sure I’ve ever wanted to be “grown-up”, let alone “old”, but I have always wanted to be (in my own opinion of myself) the person this poem describes.
The second, “Invictus” is similar in theme, but also subtly different.  I like it because it is not about “hope” (there are many songs and poems about hope) or rising to a new level, it is instead a cry of defiance: “I thank whatever gods may be, for my unconquerable soul.”  It is a refusal to be beaten down.  (Anyone living a life of quiet desperation??)
The third addition, “Affirmation“, is another of the songs I first heard in Saudi and came to love.  Probably half the lines mean something to me personally.  That says something when a single song can touch you at so many different points.  The CD (the group is “Savage Garden”) actually has several GREAT songs on it and is well worth purchasing if you get the chance.
Gimme Three Steps” is one of those simple, likeable songs that “seeps” into your consciousness and keeps repeating until it’s almost in your genetic code.  …And it’s such a “Southern” song.  I want to visit “The Jug”.  It’s a shame the accident killed so much of the original Lynard Skynard group.  I have to wonder how much more great Southern Rock they might have produced.
Have Gun Will Travel” was a black and white TV show from my childhood.  Every episode was about right and wrong, good and evil, and “men” facing up to whatever is required to make things right.  It was also my first exposure (that I recall) to the concept of the Renaissance Man.  The multi-lingual, classically educated and cultured, well-read, martial artist who at one moment is dressed as a “dandy” and the next becomes the “Man In Black”.  You can find the episodes on Country channels and Old TV channels.  I highly recommend watching them if you ever get the chance.  The theme song is only on at the closing credits – when the hero cowboy rides away into the distance (naturally).   I never said the show’s message was subtle!!  I have the first three seasons on DVD.  Unfortunately, the owners of the series have decided to screw their public and broken up the fourth season in to two sets so they can try to squeeze a few extra dollars out of the show’s fan base.  I’m waiting for a consolidated set of discs before I buy the latest season (four).
In MyRoom” is one of many hits from the Beach Boys.  I’m continually amazed at how many hits they had, and yet, they never won a major award (Grammy, are you listening?)  Anyway, this is just one of many of their songs which I love.  This one, in contrast to most of their fun, uplifting songs is a slower, more melancholy song.  But anyone who has spent more than a few moments alone can appreciate the haunting lyrics.  Again, with this song, read the lyrics – then go listen to the song.  The music compliments the words as it always does in great songs.
Finally, there is “Just My Imagination“.  I have so many favorite R&B songs and groups – it’s hard to start saying I really like one more than another.  No, it really isn’t THAT hard – the Temptations ROCK and are my favorite R&B group of all time!!  Anyone who has ever sat at window and seen “the girl next door” stroll by and day-dream about what might be will know exactly how it feels to be in this song.
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