I consider myself a good writer; certainly not one who will be studied in the halls of universities after I am gone, but I’ve been writing for a long time and I do feel, every so often, my writing can touch someone’s heart, stir their emotions, or perhaps even make a person consider a different point of view. However, I also consider myself an intelligent woman and I know better than to attempt to convey a message with new words when those great writers and orators who have gone before me have left much more meaningful words that I can “borrow” and impart.
And so, as we return to the second portion of our school year, as 2020 falls behind us like a shroud and 2021 moves forward from a murky and hazy horizon line to the center of our lives…let’s all listen to these excerpts from great American voices and hear not only with our ears, but with our hearts, the message they are sending to us all. Welcome to 2021, everyone!
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear, I rise. Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear, I rise. – Maya Angelou
I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear…singing with mouths open their strong melodious songs – Walt Whitman
They’ll see how beautiful I am …I, too, am America. – Langston Hughes
I prefer peace. But if trouble must come, let it come in my time, so my children can live in peace. – Thomas Paine
It is the individual who can and does make a difference even in this increasingly populous, complex world of ours. – Sandra Day O’Connor
Let us put our minds together and see what life we can make for our children. – Chief Sitting Bull
There is no life that does not contribute to history. – Dorothy West
The most important thought that ever occupied my mind is that of my individual responsibility to God. – Daniel Webster