Monday, May 18, 2015

“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” ― Maya Angelou

My wife and I both love the person and the poetry of fellow Arkansan Maya Angelou and were very sad at her passing last year.  Today is dedicated to her and to a couple of other poets who know how to inspire.  Maya wrote, “I don't know if I continue, even today, always liking myself. But what I learned to do many years ago was to forgive myself. It is very important for every human being to forgive herself or himself because if you live, you will make mistakes- it is inevitable. But once you do and you see the mistake, then you forgive yourself and say, 'Well, if I'd known better I'd have done better,' that's all. So you say to people who you think you may have injured, 'I'm sorry,' and then you say to yourself, 'I'm sorry.' If we all hold on to the mistake, we can't see our own glory in the mirror because we have the mistake between our faces and the mirror; we can't see what we're capable of being. You can ask forgiveness of others, but in the end the real forgiveness is in one's own self. I think that young men and women are so caught by the way they see themselves. Now mind you. When a larger society sees them as unattractive, as threats, as too black or too white or too poor or too fat or too thin or too sexual or too asexual, that's rough. But you can overcome that. The real difficulty is to overcome how you think about yourself. If we don't have that we never grow, we never learn, and sure as hell we should never teach.” 

Emily Dickinson is another favorite, and this short poem one of her best.
                  “If I Can Stop One Heart From Breaking”
If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.

While both Maya Angelou and Emily Dickinson are no longer with us, the following poem is by  Catherine Pulsifer who is very much still living and writing of hope.
                                   “A Poem of Hope” 
     When life is getting you down,
And you need a little hope.
Look deep down inside yourself,
And you'll find the way to cope.
     When life is getting you down,
And you need a little love.
Go to the person whom you are the closest,
As the rest they are above.
     When life is getting you down,
And all you need is a laugh.
Find the friend that makes you smile,
They may even be your staff.
     When life is getting you down,
Don't allow it so.
Change the way you think of life,
And life will be better, you know.
     When life is getting you down,
Take time to pray
Don't allow yourself to frown
God will help you see the blessings of the day.

May these thoughts bring you a brighter day, a smile to your face, the inspiration to be kind to all you meet.
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