Sunday, May 11, 2008

Bang-ups and Hang-ups

To this day I still believe it: there are few authors I've encountered that are more deep, layered, wise, and entertaining than Dr. Seuss. These "children's books" have more wisdom for adults than some self-help books. Perhaps the most obvious and most famously wise book by Dr. Seuss is his very last work before he died, and a popular graduation gift: Oh, the Places You'll Go!. It resonates with people because of its straightforward but optimistic style, written as only Seuss can do it. I love the whole book, but tonight, I love this part most:

"I'm sorry to say so
but sadly, it's true
that Bang-ups
and Hang-ups
can happen to you.

You can get all hung up
in a prickle-ly perch.
And your gang will fly on.
You'll be left in a Lurch.

You'll come down from the Lurch
with an unpleasant bump.
And the chances are, then,
that you'll be in a Slump.

And when you're in a Slump,
you're not in for much fun.
Un-slumping yourself
is not easily done."

And later...

"On and on you will hike.
And I know you'll hike far
and face up to your problems
whatever they are.

You'll get mixed up, of course,
as you already know.
You'll get mixed up with many strange birds as you go.
So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact
and remember that Life's
a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with your left.

And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)


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