Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Dominion of Choice

There is no better way to capture the power and inspiration of Linda Hooper's message to our school community at the recent Scholarship Banquet and to our high school students the morning after, than to share the poem with which she closes each and every lecture she gives on the story of her students and the now famous Paper Clips Project in Whitwell, Tennessee:

I came into this world without being asked

And when the time for dying comes

I shall not be consulted

But between the boundaries of birth and death

Lies the Dominion of Choice

To be a doer or a dreamer

To be a lifter or a leaner

To speak out or remain silent

To extend a hand of friendship

Or to look the other way

To feel the suffering of others

Or to be callous and insensitive

These are the choices

It is in the choosing

That my measure as a person

Is Determined

-Gertrude Hildreth Housman

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