Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -- Mark Twain
great trials and tribulations
"I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great
trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. And
some of you
have come from areas where your quest -- quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of
persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of
creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.
Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia,
go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing
that somehow this situation can and will be changed.
Let us not wallow in the valley of
despair, I say to you today, my friends.
And so even though we face the difficulties of
today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out
the true meaning of its creed: 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of
former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the
table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state
sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be
transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a
nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of
I have a dream today!
I have a dream that one day,
down in Alabama, with its
vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of 'interposition' and 'nullification' -- one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black
girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and
I have a dream today!
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every
hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and
the crooked places will be made straight; 'and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh
shall see it together.'
This is our hope, and
this is the faith that I go back to the South
With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of
hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation
into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work
together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for
freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.
I first discovered Helen Ward when I bought a copy of her The Tin Forest--the story of a man who in his solitude creates for himself a tin forest; once he builds a replica of the real things he desires, it is only a matter of time before real plants and animals begin to appear in the tin forest--at a used book sale at one of my old libraries when I was in grad school. What makes Ward stand out is that she always paints an intimate story, including details that pull you into the world of the story. I just love her!
We recently got a copy of Helen Ward's The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse; not a
new story, but merely a retelling and re-illustrating of a Aesop's classic. I LOVE
Helen Ward's artwork, which is a feast for the senses, so full of color,
lavish artwork that leaves you feeling as contented as that adorable
The hardest part of being the Director in a small library is that we don't have an HR person, so on top of everything else we do we also get to do the paperwork for the new hires, and retires. Thank God for the internet or these processes would take a lot longer!
One of my board members pointed out that though I'd been informed of staff retirements, I had to officially accept them with a letter...I am finding that a paper trail is an important thing. So, I found a short and simple letter on one university's HR website (sorry forgot which!?) and honed it to work for us. Attached is my sample of a retirement letter.
Is anyone else out there going through this process too?