Thursday, May 9, 2013

Teaching Ithaca

We had a breakfast at school today honoring our first graduating seniors. Afterwards, my college writing class, which all the seniors attend, held a Socratic discussion on the question "what is the future?" They shared viewpoints and argued on statements from the future does not exist to we shape our futures. At the end, I shared this, one of my favorite poems, read by Sir Sean Connery (whom they love). This is the wish I impart to the young scholars of the class of 2013 as they set out to pursue their dreams in the wider world:

    Keep Ithaca always in your mind.
    Arriving there is what you're destined for.
    But don't hurry the journey at all.
    Better if it lasts for years,
    so that you're old by the time you reach the island,
    wealthy with all you've gained on the way,
    not expecting Ithaca to make you rich.
    Ithaca gave you the marvelous journey.
   Without her you would have not set out.
   She has nothing left to give you now.

    And if you find her poor, Ithaca won't have fooled you.
    Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,
    you'll have understood by then what these Ithacas mean.


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