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mpelchat's picture
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 10 2008
Posts: 214

Hello Friends,

In the past few months, we have discussed many topics, transferred information and had a chance to learn from each other.  Much of this has been bleak and the future holds many challenges for all of us, however with knowledge we can face the future knowing we are as ready as we can be for it. 

This thread is being given to all for a place to put items that have inspired you, that haven given you hope and courage in hard times.  Whatever has given you inspiration may help another

I would like to start this thread with a poem by Robert Frost:

The Road Not Taken
TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;         5
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,         10
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.         15
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Many of us have taken this road, it is not easy but it can make all the difference.

Cloudfire's picture
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 29 2008
Posts: 1813
Re: Inspiration



I've often been tempted to post that poem on CM.  It's the only poem I've taken the time to memorize by heart, as it crystalizes the way I view the path I have taken.

Maybe it's because I spent a lot of time tromping through the woods as a child, or because I have done a bit of backpacking, but whenever I am at a decisive juncture in life, it manifests in my dreams as hiking through various topography.  The trail metaphor really works for me, I guess.  I've even come to recognize my own personal metaphorical meaning of rivers, waterfalls, mountains, rising trails, marshes, and so on.  So I guess it's not surprising that this poem works well for me.

And, indeed, I've often chosen the path less travelled by, and Frost's final line, "and that has made all the difference" says it with sublime simplicity.

There have been many bumps in the trail I've chosen, but when I look back, it's mostly when I have travelled the well-trodden path that I have lived to regret.

Thanks for the post.

mutschler's picture
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Mar 7 2009
Posts: 26
Re: Inspiration

I have a personal mission statement from an unknown source that touches upon the theme that the most worthwhile actions are usually the most difficult.  Hope someone finds a common thread here:

"I do not choose to be a common man. It is my right to be uncommon if I can.  I seek opportunity, not security. I refuse to be a kept citizen, to be humbled and dulled by having the State look after me.

 I want to dream and to succeed, never to be numbered among those weak and timid souls who have known neither victory nor defeat.  I know that happiness can come only from the inside through hard constructive work and sincere positive thinking.

I know that the so-called pleasures of the moment should not be confused with a state of happiness.  I know that I can get a measure of inner satisfaction from any job if I intelligently plan and courageously execute it.

Yes, I want to live dangerously, to plan my life on the basis of calculated risks, to resolve the problems of everyday lining into a measure of inner peace.

I know that if I know how to do all this, I will know how to live and, if I know how to live, I will know how to die.

SagerXX's picture
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 11 2009
Posts: 2252
Re: Inspiration


I found this credited to somebody named Dean Alfange, with the following bio info:   

"The Honorable Dean Alfange was an American statesman born December 2, 1899, in Constantinople (now Istanbul). He was raised in upstate New York. He served in the U.S. Army during World War I and attended Hamilton College, graduating in the class of 1922."

Nice quote -- thanks!

Viva -- Sager 


becky's picture
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 8 2009
Posts: 113
Re: Inspiration

The "Definitive Agriculture/Permaculture" thread has been an oasis of calm for me (thanks, Aaron for starting it!). I can't believe how happy those pictures of potato barrels make me feel.

Mutschler, that mission statement is great. I'm going to print it out and memorize it.


mpelchat's picture
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 10 2008
Posts: 214
Re: Inspiration


Serenity Prayer

God, give us grace to accept with serenity
the things that cannot be changed,
Courage to change the things
which should be changed,
and the Wisdom to distinguish
the one from the other.

Living one day at a time,
Enjoying one moment at a time,
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace,
Taking, as Jesus did,
This sinful world as it is,
Not as I would have it,
Trusting that You will make all things right,
If I surrender to Your will,
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life,
And supremely happy with You forever in the next.


gregroberts's picture
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 6 2008
Posts: 1024
Re: Inspiration

Jack London's Credo

I would rather be ashes than dust!

I would rather that my spark should burn out

    in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled
by dry-rot.

I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom

    of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and
permanent planet.

The function of man is to live, not to exist.

I shall not waste my days trying to prolong them.

I shall use my time.

My brother Tom passed away on July 25, 2008, he was 53. Jack London was one of Tom's favorite authors and this was his credo as well.

cat233's picture
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 20 2008
Posts: 575
Re: Inspiration

Hi Greg,

I hope your days are filled with fond memories and happy thoughts of your brother. 

From your post, my guess is you live each day to its fullest.

Thank you for sharing London's words.


Dogs_In_A_Pile's picture
Status: Martenson Brigade Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 4 2009
Posts: 2606
Re: Inspiration

Cat could have told you this -

From "Elegy Written In A Country Churchyard" - Thomas Gray, 1751

The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave,
Awaits alike th' inevitable hour:-
The paths of glory lead but to the grave.


Here's the entire piece -

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