What will your verse be?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

I didn't realize that Robin Williams had carved out a little nook in my heart until I heard the unbidden "No!" come out of my mouth immediately after hearing the tragic news of his passing. From the tributes that have poured in since then, it's clear that he had the same effect on countless people all over the world. We've lost our dear Captain, and we will all laugh a little bit less now that he is gone—but his verse, brimming with that uncontainable energy, poignant insight, and boundless sense of wonder, will always remain.

"They're not that different from you, are they? Same haircuts. Full of hormones, just like you.
Invincible, just like you feel.
The world is their oyster.
They believe they're destined for great things, just like many of you,
their eyes are full of hope, just like you.
Did they wait until it was too late to make from their lives even one iota of what they were capable? Because, you see gentlemen, these boys are now fertilizing daffodils.
But if you listen real close, you can hear them whisper their legacy to you.
Go on, lean in. Listen, you hear it?
Carpe ... hear it? Carpe ...
Carpe diem. Seize the day, boys.
Make your lives extraordinary."

"But oh, to be free.
Not to have to go, 'Poof! What do you need?' 
'Poof! What do you need?' 
'Poof! What do you need?'
To be my own master.
Such a thing would be greater than all the magic and all the treasures in all the world.

"You'll have bad times, but it'll always wake you up to the good stuff you weren't paying attention to.
People call these things imperfections, but they're not.
Oh, that's the good stuff.
And then we get to choose who we let into our weird little worlds.
You're not perfect, sport, and let me save you the suspense:
this girl you've met, she's not perfect either.
But the question is whether or not you're perfect for each other."

"All of life is a coming home.
Salesmen, secretaries, coal miners, beekeepers, sword swallowers, all of us.
All the restless hearts of the world, all trying to find a way home.
It's hard to describe what I felt like then. Picture yourself walking for days in the driving snow;
you don't even know you're walking in circles.
The heaviness of your legs in the drifts, your shouts disappearing into the wind.
How small you can feel, and how far away home can be.
Home. The dictionary defines it as both a place of origin and a goal or destination.
And the storm? The storm was all in my mind.
Or as the poet Dante put it: In the middle of the journey of my life, I found myself in a dark wood,
for I had lost the right path.
Eventually I would find the right path, but in the most unlikely place."

"To quote from Whitman, 'Oh me! Oh life! of the questions of these recurring
Of the endless trains of the faithless, of cities fill’d with the foolish ...
What good amid these, O me, O life?
That you are here—that life exists and identity,
That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.'
What will your verse be?"

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  1. haaay... I am also suprised at how much I am affected by his passing. I overheard the news from an officemate tell another officemate after she received a text from her nephew in the middle of discussing an issue at work. From my cube, I told her, "You lie! That's not true." But no...