To continue our Graduation Week posts, I wanted to share this wonderful short poem from Donald Kaag, a high school teacher from Moscow, Idaho. He shared it at a high school graduation in 2006, the year he was retiring. These were his final words to his students and I think they are applicable to all of us:
I’d wish you a nice life
If I didn’t care about you so much…
What I wish for you is freezing cold
So you will appreciate warmth.
So food will taste wonderful when you get it.
So that when you find a true friend you will appreciate
The work and the difficulty of earning…and keeping…friendship.
I wish you love
And love again…
That you find something so precious you would give your life for it,
And then the sense…the heart…to live for it.
I wish you fear
So you can confront it, conquer it.
And a life lived…earned…
A life of challenge and caring
Despite the cost
Giving your best,whatever it takes
Standing for what you believe in…whatever it is.
Giving more than you take
I wish you to brave the storms of life
Pay the cost in wounds…tears…scars
And I wish you the most precious gift you can ever possess…
The character you fabricate along the way.
Don’t have a nice life My Kiddos
Build a good one.