Ancient Greek Hymns to Athena

translations and notes by Shawn Eyer to commemorate the dedication to Athena Parthenos of the temple and statue which bear her name

Original translations Copyright © 1996 by Shawn Eyer

The Homeric Hymns

The religious poetry to which we refer as the Homeric Hymns was attributed in ancient times to Homer, the poet of the Iliad and Odyssey. Although nobody today regards them as the work of Homer, they are quite skillfully composed and may be dated very early. For scholars they represent an important source of information about Greek religion. The Homeric Hymn to Demeter, for instance, is a key document in the understanding of the Eleusinian mysteries.

There are two Homeric Hymns to the goddess Athena, one extolling her virtues as patron of the city, the other recounting beautifully her birth from the cleft brow of father Zeus.

Homeric Hymn 11 To Athena

I begin to sing of Pallas Athena, the dread Protectress of the city,
who with Ares looks after matters of war, the plundering of cities, the battle-cry and the fray.
It is She who protects the people, wherever they might come or go.
Hail, Goddess, and give us good spirits and blessed favor!


I begin to sing of Pallas Athena…
Pallas is an ancient epithet of Athena. Although some have argued that it is a form of pallo, to brandish, most feel that pallas is in fact an archaic word for maiden.

…dread Protectress of the city…
"City-protecting" (erusiptolis) is a common epithet of Athena.

Homeric Hymn 28 To Athena

I begin my song of Pallas Athena, illustrious goddess with sharp grey eyes.
Crafty one, She, with a heart relentless,
modest Virgin, Protectress of the city!
The valiant Tritogeneia was roused by Zeus the wise
from his own awesome brow, the tools of battle on her arm,
glittering and gold: All the immortals were stunned.
Without delay she leapt from the ever-living skull
to come before Zeus, master of the aegis,
and the sharp javelin rattled in her hand.
Mighty Olympos was sent madly spinning
by the potency of her, of the Grey-eyed one.
From every direction the earth let loose a chilling scream.
Waves, deep and dark, stirred up in the seething ocean,
and all at once spray jetted from the sea.
The shining son of Hyperion brought his swift steeds to rest, waiting long,
until the Maiden divested her incorruptible shoulders of the godlike armor…
She, Pallas Athena! Wise Zeus laughed!
That is why I say it too: Hail to you, Daughter of aegis-wielding Zeus!
While now I sing a different song, I always remember you!


illustrious goddess with sharp grey eyes…
This term (glaukopis) is an epithet of Athena throughout Homeric literature and is found in later sources as well. Often it is simply rendered "grey-eyed." However, the sense of the word may refer less to the color of the eyes as to their glare or opacity owing to the gemstones used for the eyes of statues of Athena.

modest Virgin, Protectress of the city…
"Virgin" is parthenos, for which the Parthenon is named.

The valiant Tritogeneia was roused…
Although Tritogeneia ranks with Pallas as an ancient epithet of Athena, its exact meaning is now unknown. "Born of the Triton" and "triple born" are typical suggestions.

Zeus, master of the aegis…
The aegis was a magical shield in the property of Zeus. The Homeric Hymn twice refers to Zeus as "aegis-holder."

The Orphic Hymn to Athena

The Orphic Hymns are a collection of eighty-seven ritual invocations which were probably used by certain initiates of the Orphic mystery cult. Though some have placed them far later (as well as far earlier), they were probably composed between 100 BCE and 150 CE.

The Orphic Hymn to Athena celebrates the goddess with a dizzying barrage of colorful and often baffling imagery.

To Athena, with an incense of aromatic herbs.

Pallas, you only-begotten One, born of mighty Zeus, awesome you are, and divine:
Goddess so blessed, lifting high the turmoil of the fray,
Mighty One unspeakable yet so well spoken of!
Great-named One at home in a vault of stone,
Caught up in haughty hills and wandering the shaded mountain’s ridge,
You who put a dance in the heart and glory in embattlements,
You can put the sting of mania into a mortal soul!
Athletic Maiden with a heart sublime,
Slayer of the Gorgon, fugitive of the bridal bed,
Mother of Art in all your abundance, catalyst of progress!
You bring folly to the corrupt and a sense of purpose to the pure!
Indeed, you are male and female in one,
Patron of war and wisdom,
You are fluid of form, a dragon,
Infused with inspiration of the Gods!
Rightly-honored One, who brought Phlegran giants down to defeat,
You driver of steeds, Tritogeneia, save us from evil, bearing Victory in your arms!
Day and night, eternally, in even the loneliest hours,
Hear my prayer, and grant us an abundant peace, fulfillment, good health.
Make prosperous the hour, gray-eyed One, inventor of Art,
The object of the people’s ceaseless prayers–
My Queen!


Pallas, you only-begotten One…
This term, monogenes, means only-born. It is interesting to note that another important Wisdom-figure, the divine Logos, is described as "the only-begotten of God" in the Johannine literature of the New Testament.

Mighty One unspeakable yet so well spoken of…
The Greek arrhete refers to a reverent, even fearful, silence. In the hymn it is followed immediately by rhete, its opposite.

Great-named One at home in a vault of stone…
The Greek word antrodiaitos literally means "to make one’s home in a cavern" or "grotto." This seems an unexpected chthonic attribution, although one might understand the Parthenon as an artificial cavern of sorts.

Slayer of the Gorgon, fugitive of the bridal bed…
An epithet of Athena, who aided Perseus in the act of destroying the monsters. Athena’s statue in the Parthenon depicted the head of the Gorgon on her breastplate, the aegis.

You driver of steeds, Tritogeneia, save us from evil, bearing Victory in your arms…
The name Tritogeneia is of uncertain derivation and meaning. Nikephore means "carrying victory," and in the ancient Parthenon Athena was shown carrying Nike, victory personified.

Continue ReadingAncient Greek Hymns to Athena

Buffy The Vampire Slayer

Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Buffy the Vampire Slayer

"As long as there have been vampires, there has been the Slayer. One girl in all the world, to find them where they gather and to stop the spread of their evil and the swell of their members. She is the Slayer."

My favorite television show. A blonde teenage girl turns reluctant saviour of the world. I love it because it’s dark and complex. The characters are three-dimensional, evil doesn’t always wear a black hat, and the show is filled with myth and magic. Created by Joss Whedon, it’s in it’s seventh season and is currently airing on UPN.

Buffy The Vampire Slayer TV Show on DVD

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Complete First Season (1997)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Complete Second Season (1998)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Complete Third Season (1999)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Complete Fourth Season (2000)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Complete Fifth Season (2001)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Complete Sixth Season (2002)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Complete Seventh Season (2003)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer The Movie on DVD

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (The Movie with Kristy Swanson)

Buffy Music on CD

Once More, With Feeling (the Musical Buffy episode).

The Script Book to "Once More, With Feeling."

Great Buffy Websites

Buffy the Vampire Slayer
The Official Site from UPN.

Joss’ Stakehouse
A Yahoo Groups site where some of the best discussion of the show occurs, and where writers from the show post cryptic clues to upcoming shows under pseudonyms. Look for posts by "WilliamthePoet."

The Buffy Cross and Stake
A nice site for episode guides, and where one of the most active discussion boards resides.

Buffy Shooting Scripts
Dialog means everything on Buffy — and sometimes there are clues to what’s coming up hidden in dialog of previous episodes. If you find yourself saying "Wait, what did he just say?" even once, look at this site for the scripts.
Great episode guides, transcripts of the shows, news about the shows and cast. Also a discussion board, but I haven’t checked this one. They always seem to be up to date.

The Kitten, the Witches and the Bad Wardrobe
Willow and Tara shipper heaven. A discussion board for the fans of Willow & Tara, the lesbian couple on BTVS.

Buffy and Angel Music Pages
Welcome to the Buffy and Angel Music Pages, the information resource for songs and bands featured on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel.

Willow & Tara

Buffy Fan Fiction Websites

The Slayer’s Fan Fiction Archive
An Online collection of fan fiction for Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Angel: The Series.

Extra Flamey
A really fun fan fiction site devoted to the relationship between Willow and Tara.

I Kind of Love You: The Buffy/Willow Fanfic Archive
The official archive of Buffy/Willow slash fanfic! Visit IKOLY and find dozens of authors and well over one hundred stories.

BTVS Femme
All femme fan fiction, all the time.

Red Willow’s Fanfic
If you love the Scooby-gals with a dash of smut and served on an NC-17 platter, you’ll love Red Willow’s slash fiction. Be sure to check out the series, "The Spaces In Between" and the sequel, "Filling in the Gaps" — sizzle!

Willow & Tara
Willow & Tara

Books on Buffy the Vampire Slayer

The Watcher’s Guide

The Watcher’s Guide Part 2

The Monster Book

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Tales of the Slayer, Vol. 1

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Tales of the Slayer, Vol. II

The Sunnydale High Yearbook

Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Philosophy: Fear and Trembling in Sunnydale (Popular Culture and Philosophy Series)

Reading the Vampire Slayer: An Unofficial Critical Companion to Buffy and Angel (Tauris Parke Paperbacks)

Fighting The Forces: What’s At Stake In Buffy The Vampire Slayer?

Buffy The Vampire Slayer: The Script Book Season One Vol. 1

Buffy The Vampire Slayer: The Script Book Season One Vol. 2

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Script Book Season Two, Vol. 1

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Script Book: Season Two, Vol. 2

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Script Book: Season Two, Vol. 3

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Script Book Season Three, Vol. 1

Continue ReadingBuffy The Vampire Slayer

Saint Joan of Arc

Saint Joan of Arc
Saint Joan of Arc

Saint Joan was one of my favorite childhood heroines; a teenage girl who lead the French army to victory against the British in the early 1400’s, inspired by heavenly voices. Eventually she was captured by the British and burned at the stake for witchcraft. She was canonized as a saint by the Roman Catholic church in 1920. I admire her for her strength of belief, her faith in herself, and courage in the face of the worst humanity has to offer. She is not celebrated nearly as much as she should be in this world.

The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc
Now playing in movie theatres. While visually arresting, I wasn’t as satisfied with the movie. They way her visions were portrayed was a bit strange to me, and the ending had some odd moments as well. The website is certainly something to see. If you don’t have Flash 4; you’ll certainly want to download it.

Joan of Arc: The Mini-Series (now on video)
CBS has a very pretty site devoted to Joan, with pics from the mini-series and links to historical information. The mini-series was excellent and I actually liked it better than the theatrically-released movie.

Saint Joan of Arc
A good brief biography of Joan.

Joan of Arc – Gay Icon
The Gay Heroes site quickly points out that Joan wasn’t a lesbian, and was a virgin, but highlights her role model status for lesbian women.

The Museum of Joan of Arc at Rouen
On the 30th of May, 1431, Joan of Arc was burnt to death at the “place du Vieux Marché” in Rouen. Located 30 meters from the stake, the Joan of Arc Museum has been open for 45 years.

The Joan of Arc Chapel
A 14th century chapel in France, rumored to have been visited by Joan.

Saint Joan’s Armor
A story about armor rumored to be Joan’s.

Information about Joan
There are good links here, and some strange stuff about how L. Ron Hubbard and Kurt Weiland of Scientology fame are against Joan of Arc. Don’t ask me why.

Joan of Arc, the Band
Of course there’s a band called Joan of Arc, although no one in it is a girl. Don’t ask me why here, either.

Order of the Grail, Joan of Arc Commandery, Chivalry
The Order of the Grail offers Initiation into a Chivalric Order with a
legitimate Medieval lineage. Alchemical, Rosicrucian, Gnostic and
Hermetic Studies. Can’t get in here without a password.

The Library of Witchcraft’s biography of Joan
including some pictures of classic paintings of her.

A gorgeous triptych stained-glass window of Joan: Left window, center window, and right window

Joan of Arc Bust
If you can’t live without Joan, buy a bronze statue of her.

Books You Can Buy About Joan (From Amazon Books)

Joan of Arc – Mark Twain

Joan of Arc : Her Story – Regine Pernoud, Marie-Veronique Clin, Jeremy Duquesnay Adams

Joan of Arc : By Herself and Her Witnesses – Regine Pernoud

The Trial of Joan of Arc (Visionary Women) – Marina Warner (Introduction), Monica Furlong (Editor)

Joan of Arc : In Her Own Words – Willard R. Trask (Compiler), Joan (Editor)

Dove and Sword : A Novel of Joan of Arc – Nancy Garden

Joan of Arc – Josephine Pool, Angela Barrett (Illustrator)

Joan of Arc : Of Domremy – Michael Morpurgo, Michael Foreman (Illustrator)

Joan of Arc – Diane Stanley

Young Joan : A Novel – Barbara Dana

Pisan, Christina de – Joan of Arc

Continue ReadingSaint Joan of Arc

Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman Logo

Books on Wonder Woman from

How to Draw Wonder Woman – John Delaney, Ron Boyd (Illustrator)

Wonder Woman : Featuring over Five Decades of Great Covers (Tiny Folio) – Amy Handy (Editor), Gloria Steinem, Steven Korte (Editor)

Wonder Woman : Gods and Goddesses – John Byrne

Wonder Woman : Lifelines – John Byrne

Wonder Woman : Second Genesis – John Byrne

Wonder Woman : The Challenge of Artemis – William Messner-Loebs, Mike Deodato (Contributor), William Moulton Marston

Wonder Woman Amazonia : A Tale of the Wonder Woman – William Messner-Loebs

Wonder Woman Archives (Archive Editions) – Bob Kahan (Editor), H. G. Peter (Illustrator), William Marston

Wonder Woman Notecards

Encyclopedia of Comic Book Heroes : Wonder Woman – Michael Fleisher

Wonder Woman – William Moulton Marston

The Further Adventures of Wonder Woman – Martin H. Greenberg (Editor)

Continue ReadingWonder Woman

The "I Have A Dream" Speech

Martin Luther King, Aug. 28, 1963

I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation.

This momentous decree came as a great beacon of hope to millions of slaves, who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice.

It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.

But one hundred years later, the colored America is still not free.

One hundred years later, the life of the colored American is still sadly crippled by the manacle of segregation and the chains of discrimination.

One hundred years later, the colored American lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity.

One hundred years later, the colored American is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land.

So we have come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.

In a sense we have come to our Nation’s Capital to cash a check.

When the architects of our great republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir.

This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed to the inalienable rights of life liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned.

Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given its colored people a bad check, a check that has come back marked "insufficient funds."

But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation.

So we have come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and security of justice.

We have also come to his hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of Now.

This is not time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism.

Now is the time to make real the promise of democracy.

Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice.

Now is the time to lift our nation from the quick-sands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.

Now is the time to make justice a reality to all of God’s children.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of it’s colored citizens.

This sweltering summer of the colored people’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality.

Nineteen sixty-three is not an end but a beginning.

Those who hope that the colored Americans needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns tobusiness as usual.

There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the colored citizen is granted his citizenship rights.

The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.

We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and thehotels of the cities.

We cannot be satisfied as long as the colored person’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one.

We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their self-hood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating "for white only."

We cannot be satisfied as long as a colored person in Mississippi cannot vote and a colored person in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote.

No, no we are not satisfied and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of your trials and tribulations.

Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by storms of persecutions 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 modern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed.

Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.

I say to you, my friends, we have the difficulties of today and tomorrow.

I still have a dream.

It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

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 created equal.

I have a dream that one day out in the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners 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 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 their character.

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 interpostion and nullification; that one day right down in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be engulfed, every hill shall be exalted and every mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plains 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.

This is the faith that I will go back to the South with.

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 climb up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with new meaning "My country ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing.

Land where my father’s died, land of the Pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring!"

And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. So let freedom ring from the hilltops of New Hampshire.

Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York.

Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania.

Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado.

Let freedom ring from the curvacious slopes of California.

But not only that, let freedom, ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.

Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi and every mountainside.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every tenament and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old spiritual, "Free at last, free at last. Thank God Almighty, we are free at last."

Sound bites from Dr. King speeches

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Permission is hereby granted to download, reprint, and/or otherwise redistribute this file, provided appropriate point of origin credit is given to the preparer(s) and the National Public Telecomputing Network.

Continue ReadingThe "I Have A Dream" Speech

Inaugural Address

John F. Kennedy, (January 20, 1961)

We observe today not a victory of party but a celebration of freedom… symbolizing an end as well as a beginning… signifying renewal as well as change for I have sworn before you and Almighty God the same solemn oath our forebears prescribed nearly a century and three-quarters ago.

The world is very different now, for man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life. And yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe… the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God. We dare not forget today that we are the heirs of that first revolution.

Let the word go forth from this time and place… to friend and foe alike. . that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans… born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage… and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today… at home and around the world.

Let every nation know… whether it wishes us well or ill… that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and the success of liberty. This much we pledge… and more.

To those old allies whose cultural and spiritual origins we share: we pledge the loyalty of faithful friends. United… there is little we cannot do in a host of co-operative ventures. Divided… there is little we can do… for we dare not meet a powerful challenge, at odds, and split asunder. To those new states whom we welcome to the ranks of the free: we pledge our word that one form of colonial control shall not have passed away merely to be replaced by a far more iron tyranny.

We shall not always expect to find them supporting our view. But we shall always hope to find them strongly supporting their own freedom… and to remember that… in the past… those who foolishly sought power by riding the back of the tiger ended up inside. To those people in the huts and villages of half the globe struggling to break the bonds of mass misery:

we pledge our best efforts to help them help themselves, for whatever period is required… not because the Communists may be doing it, not because we seek their votes, but because it is right. If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.

To our sister republics south of our border: we offer a special pledge… to convert our good words into good deeds… In a new alliance for progress … to assist free men and free governments in casting off the chains of poverty. But this peaceful revolution of hope cannot become the prey of hostile powers. Let all our neighbors know that we shall join with them to oppose aggression or subversion anywhere in the Americas… and let every other power know that this hemisphere intends to remain the master of its own house.

To that world assembly of sovereign states: the United Nations… our last best hope in an age where the instruments of war have far outpaced the instruments of peace, we renew our pledge of support… to prevent it from becoming merely a forum for invective… to strengthen its shield of the new and the weak… and to enlarge the area in which its writ may run.

Finally, to those nations who would make themselves our adversaries, we offer not a pledge but a request: that both sides begin anew the quest for peace; before the dark powers of destruction unleashed by science engulf all humanity in planned or accidental self-destruction.

We dare not tempt them with weakness. For only when our arms are sufficient beyond doubt can we be certain beyond doubt that they will never be employed. But neither can two great and powerful groups of nations take comfort from our present course… both sides overburdened by the cost of modern weapons, both rightly alarmed by the steady spread of the deadly atom, yet both racing to alter that uncertain balance of terror that stays the hand of Mankind’s final war.

So let us begin anew… remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof. Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate. Let both sides explore what problems unite us instead of belaboring those problems which divide us. Let both sides, for the first time, formulate serious and precise proposals for the inspection and control of arms… and bring the absolute power to destroy other nations under the absolute control of all nations. Let both sides seek to invoke the wonders of science instead of its terrors. Together let us explore the stars, conquer the deserts, eradicate disease, tap the ocean depths, and encourage the arts and commerce. Let both sides unite to heed in all corners of the earth the command of Isaiah… to "undo the heavy burdens… let the oppressed go free."

And if a beachhead of co-operation may push back the jungle of suspicion… let both sides join in creating not a new balance of power… but a new world of law… where the strong are just… and the weak secure… and the peace preserved.

All this will not be finished in the first one hundred days. Nor will it be finished in the first one thousand days… nor in the life of this administration, nor even perhaps in our lifetime on this planet. But let us begin.

In your hands, my fellow citizens… more than mine… will rest the final success or failure of our course. Since this country was founded, each generation of Americans has been summoned to give testimony to its national loyalty. The graves of young Americans who answered the call to service surround the globe.

Now the trumpet summons us again… not as a call to bear arms, though arms we need… not as a call to battle… though embattled we are… but a call to bear the burden of a long twilight struggle… year in and year out, rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation… a struggle against the common enemies of man: tyranny… poverty… disease… and war itself.

Can we forge against these enemies a grand and global alliance… North and South… East and West… that can assure a more fruitful life for all mankind? Will you join in that historic effort?

In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger; I do not shrink from this responsibility… I welcome it. I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it… and the glow from that fire can truly light the world.

And so, my fellow Americans… ask not what your country can do for you… ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world… ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the Freedom of Man.

Finally, whether you are citizens of America or citizens of the world, ask of us here the same high standards of strength and sacrifice which we ask of you. With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds; let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own.

Credit: JFK Resources Online

Continue ReadingInaugural Address

Words To Live By

Carpe Diem

Discontent is the penalty we pay for being ungrateful for what we have.

Watch you thoughts; they become words
Watch your words, they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits.
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; they become destiny.

Life is a grindstone. Whether it grinds you down or polishes you up depends on what you are made of.

Temper is what gets most of us into trouble. Pride is what keeps us there.

The good news is that we’re still present to hear the bad news.

Goals are dreams with deadlines.

Dwight Eisenhower use to demonstrate the art of leadership with a simple piece of string. He’d put it on the table and say, Pull it, and it will follow you anywhere you wish. Push it, and it will go nowhere at all.

Life is too short to drink bad wine.

Love, like everything else in life is a risk.

Never send a ferret to do a weasel’s job.

Life is what happens while you’re standing still.

For thou hadst come from a kingdom of beauty, Thy trees have thorns and thy bushes blooms, Thy beauty is in thine own soul.

The line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between political parties, but right through every human heart.

You can’t think your way into better living, you have to live your way into better thinking.

Share your wisdom, not your prejudices.

On the plains of hesitation, lie the broken bones of men who on the brink of victory rested and rested died!

Philosophy is the self-serving rationalization of a weak mind, unable to deal with the unknown and not having the wherewithal to figure it out.

Success is a journey… not a destination!

It is better to burn out than to fade away.

Be you. Nobody else can be.

Sometimes it takes an old friend to remind you who you are… and someone who you just met to show you what you can be.

Victory is what happens when ten thousand hours of training meet up with one moment of opportunity.

You can’t set sail for new seas if you’re afraid to lose sight of the shore.

My candle burns at both ends it will not last the night but, ah my friends and oh my foes, it casts a lovely light.

You have to choose happiness; It doesn’t chose you.

Luck is the residue of preparation.

You were once wild here, don’t let them tame you. – Isadora Duncan

Someone, somewhere, sometime is gonna love you for who you are.

Its good to have friends in both heaven and hell –George Herbert

One spark can set hundreds on fire.

Sorrow looks down. Worry looks back. Faith looks up.

Not everything that counts can be counted and not everything that can be counted, counts.

Happiness is wanting what you have, not having what you want.

If you are not living on the edge, you’re taking too much room.

I am what I like about others.

That which you cannot give away, you do not possess. It possesses you.

You never lose by loving. You always lose by holding back.

You have to learn from the failures of others, you could not possibly live long enough to make them all yourself.

If you fail to try, you fail to succeed.

g’nothi s’auton – Know thy self- inscription on the wall of the temple at Delphi

Honey, I can upstage you with out even being on the stage.
–Tallulah Bankhead

Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

Show me a thoroughly satisfied man and I will show you a failure.
–Thomas Edison

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly: what is essential is invisible to the eye.
— Antoine de Saint-Exupery

The times might have changed, but people haven’t
— Carol Brady (Brady Bunch)

If you are not a part of the solution, you are part of the problem.

Use the talents you possess, for the woods would be very silent if no birds sang except the best.
— Henry Van Dyke

If you were happy every day of your life, you wouldn’t be a human being. You’d be a game show host.
— from the movie Heathers

He who cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself.
— George Herbert

A man should never be ashamed to own he has been wrong, which is but saying in other words that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.
–Alexander Pope

Deal with the faults of others as gently as with your own.

Late to Bed, Early to Rise; Work like Hell, and You’ll be Wise.
— Hyman G. Rickover, Father of the U.S. Nuclear Navy

Who you are speaks so loudly, I can’t hear what you’re saying.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you want to keep on getting what you’re getting, keep on doing what you’re doing.

When nothing is sure, everything is possible.
— Margret Drabble

I’m an idealist. I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way.
— Carl Sandburg

Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die today.
— James Dean

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength
While loving someone deeply gives you courage
— Lao Tzu

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.
–Yogi Berra

We are not Human Beings having a spiritual experience. We are Spiritual Beings having a human experience.
— Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

When choosing between two evils, I always take the one I haven’t tried before.
— Mae West

Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.
–Thomas Edison

Always listen to the experts. They’ll tell you what can’t be done and why. Then do it.
— Robert Heinlein

If you build it, they will come.
— From the movie, Field of Dreams

There is no security on this earth, there is only opportunity.
— Gen. Douglas MacArthur

Do the thing you’re afraid to do and the death of fear is certain.

We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
— Oscar Wilde

Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living; the world owes you nothing; it was here first.
— Mark Twain

Success is a matter of luck. Ask any failure.
–Earl Wilson

I am a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.
— Stephen Leacock

Continue ReadingWords To Live By

True Love

by S. I. Kishor

This story originally published in a 1943 issue of Collier’s magazine. More on the story here at

John Blanchard stood up from the bench, straightened his Army uniform, and studied the crowd of people making their way through Grand Central Station.

He looked for the girl whose heart he knew, but whose face he didn’t, the girl with the rose.

His interest in her had begun thirteen months before in a Florida library. Taking a book off the shelf he found himself intrigued, not with the words of the book, but with the notes penciled in the margin.

The soft handwriting reflected a thoughtful soul and insightful mind. In the front of the book, he discovered the previous owner’s name Miss Hollis Maynell. With time and effort he located her address.

She now lived in New York City. He wrote her a letter introducing himself and inviting her to correspond. The next day he was shipped overseas for service in World War II.

During the next year and one month the two grew to know each other through the mail. Each letter was a seed falling on a fertile heart. A romance was budding. Blanchard requested a photograph, but she refused. She felt that if he really cared, it wouldn’t matter what she looked like.

When the day finally came for him to return from Europe, they scheduled their first meeting – 7:00 PM at the Grand Central Station in New York City.

"You’ll recognize me," she wrote, "by the red rose I’ll be wearing on my lapel."

So at 7:00 he was in the station looking for a girl whose heart he loved, but whose face he’d never seen.

I’ll let Mr. Blanchard tell you what happened:

"A young woman was coming toward me, her figure long and slim. Her blonde hair lay back in curls from her delicate ears; her eyes were blue as flowers. Her lips and chin had a gentle firmness, and in her pale green suit she was like springtime come alive."

"I started toward her, entirely forgetting to notice that she was not wearing a rose. As I moved, a small, provocative smile curved her lips, ‘Going my way, sailor’ she murmured."

"Almost uncontrollably I made one step closer to her, and then I saw Hollis Maynell."

"She was standing almost directly behind the girl. A woman well past 40, she had graying hair tucked under a worn hat. She was more than plump, her thick-ankled feet thrust into low-heeled shoes."

The girl in the green suit was walking quickly away. I felt as though I was split in two, so keen was my desire to follow her, and yet so deep was my longing for the woman whose spirit had truly companioned me and upheld my own."

"And there she stood. Her pale, plump face was gentle and sensible, her gray eyes had a warm and kindly twinkle. I did not hesitate. My fingers gripped the small worn blue leather copy of the book that was to identify me to her.

"This would not be love, but it would be something precious, something perhaps even better than love, a friendship for which I had been and must ever be grateful.

"I squared my shoulders and saluted and held out the book to the woman, even though while I spoke I felt choked by the bitterness of my disappointment.

"I’m Lieutenant John Blanchard, and you must be Miss Maynell. I am so glad you could meet me; may I take you to dinner?"

The woman’s face broadened into a tolerant smile.

"I don’t know what this is about, son," she answered, "but the young lady in the green suit who just went by, she begged me to wear this rose on my coat. And she said if you were to ask me out to dinner, I should go and tell you that she is waiting for you in the big restaurant across the street. She said it was some kind of test!"

It’s not difficult to understand and admire Miss Maynell’s wisdom. The true nature of a heart is seen in its response to the unattractive. "Tell me whom you love," Houssaye wrote, "And I will tell you who you are."

Continue ReadingTrue Love

Life Lesson: Giving When it Counts

Author Unknown

Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at a hospital, I got to know a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare and serious disease. Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her 5-year old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness.

The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and asked the little boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister. I saw him hesitate for only a moment before asking a deep breath and saying, "Yes, I’ll do it if it will save her."

As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheeks. Then his face grew pale and his smile faded.

He looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away?" Being young, the little boy had misunderstood the doctor; he thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood in order to save her.

You see understanding and attitude, after all, is everything.

Continue ReadingLife Lesson: Giving When it Counts

Life Lesson: The Obstacle in Our Path

Author Unknown

In ancient times, a King had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the king’s wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the king for not keeping the roads clear, But none did anything about getting the stone out of the way.

Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables. Upon approaching the boulder, the peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. After much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded.

After the peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been. The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the king indicating that the gold was for the person who removed the boulder from the roadway.

The peasant learned what many of us never understand. Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve our condition.

Continue ReadingLife Lesson: The Obstacle in Our Path