I love poems and quotations that inspire. They’ve been an important part of my life and I’ve collected hundreds of them over the years. But if I’ve to pick one that had the greatest impact on who I am today, it’s the poem, “YOUTH.”
Its powerful words have influenced my thoughts, actions and behaviour since I first read them as a teenager.
I’m sharing this poem with you in the hope that it would also make you a better person like it has done to me.
General Douglas MacArthur is widely known as its author. But it’s actually written by a Jewish immigrant to the United States named Samuel Ullman in the 1920s. Here it is – from memory:
“Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind. It is not a matter of ripe cheeks, red lips or strong knees. It is a temper of the will, a quality of the imagination and a freshness of the springs of life.”
“Nobody grows old by living a number of years. People grow old only by deserting their ideals. Years wrinkle the skin, but to give up interest wrinkles the soul. Worry, doubt, self-distrust, fear and despair; these are the long, long years that bow the head and turn the growing spirit back to dust.”
“You are as young as your faith; as old as your doubt. As young as your self-confidence; as old as your fear.”
“In the central place of your heart there is a recording chamber; so long as it continues to receive messages of beauty, hope, cheer and courage, you are young. But, when the wires are all down and your heart is covered with the snow of pessimism and the ice of cynicism, then and only then are you grown old.”
Bunny Pages is the Chairman & CEO of PAGES HOLDINGS INC. and the 2015 Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry Entrepreneur of the Year.