martin luther king, jr., 12 x 9.5, graphite and watercolor on paper
Wow. All of the sudden this blogging bit has become extremely intimidating. I mean, what can I say or what do I have to offer regarding THIS day? I am not quite sure and so, as I do with every other post and with every other activity in my life, I will just attempt to start. HERE.
I think the best way for me to express my appreciation for this day is to see it through the eyes of a child. I worked in education for many years and, although we didn't usually have school on this particular day, my classroom would always spend at least one month on the topic of peace, non-violence and of course, Martin Luther King, Jr.
Children are uninhibited and freely express themselves in a variety of ways. They are extremely compassionate in the midst of suffering. And, as a general rule, children do not see each other as better or worse than anyone else, but as part of the entire whole.
It never ceased to amaze me how the students in my classroom would embrace this predominant figure and who and what he stood for. To young people, Martin Luther King Jr.'s words are so simple, so easy to comprehend. His words make perfect sense and are extremely contagious. Hopefulness and unity still sparkle in their eyes.
May we have the ability to tap into that sparkle today.
Happy Birthday, Martin Luther King, Jr. I am so glad you were born.
I'll sign off by leaving a few of Martin's (as the children would refer to him) powerful "words":
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
"The ultimate measure of a (person) is not where he (or she) stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he (or she) stands in times of challenge and controversy."
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope."
"We must build dikes of courage to hold back the flood of fear."
"At the center of non-violence stands the principle of love."
"Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase."
"I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear."