Gathering on long stretches of lawn, huddling inside church halls, or amassing in colossal gymnasiums, tis the season to honor and applaud young scholars who have climbed the slippery rungs of the academic ladder. Here they will be granted a view that skims the treetops toward their futures.
Racing across a platform to grasp the pressed woody fibers that hold an inked seal of accomplishment, we watch the students sail forward, a breeze billowing beneath the graduates’ gowns; a tease of the winds aloft they’ll soon face full on.
A speech is prepared, rehearsed and delivered, its words an urgent call to remember the past, but seize the future, grasp it with both hands, clutch it to your heart, embrace it with a fervor that will outlast the first, tiny taste of liberty.
Dozens upon dozens of bright, earnest faces listen to microphoned wisdom: sage insight pressed upon the young and energetic meant to spur on bravery, incite tenacity, and goad some grit.
Umbilical cords to home and school, friends and parents faintly snap as if the students, fidgeting for freedom in their seats, collectively give one last tireless tug to the tethered, fraying thread that holds them bound within a tapestry of the familiar.
An abundance of flashes populate the air; crisp time-stamped moments, trapped in hand-held boxes that years later, will release a rush of recollection that will be both reflective and wistful.
Tomorrow’s outlook is surmountable, and our cloth-draped cubs will rush on ahead, taking their place at the front lines of battle, determined, unflinching, valiant.
I study these children, these long-legged, adult-bodied children, and hold my breath—inhale with hope that they may remain clear-eyed, clear-headed and clearly driven to find a conduit that will express their yet unknown ambitions.
One day they will glance back to look at their younger selves, to study their pipe dreams, their castles in air, their pie in the sky, and they will know what it took to make them go from dream to possibility, from possibility to opportunity, and from opportunity to achievement.
Never again will they find this footing, nor pass over this platform, but perhaps instead they’ll burn these bridges in order to maintain a steady, confident gaze toward a horizon we hope they will pioneer with backbone and boldness.
Be brave, be hungry, become.
May Gotta Have a Gott winner
In January, Rob and I announced that his sketches will be available toward the end of the year in the form of a 2015 calendar! And our readers would get to be the judges and voters for which doodles they’d like to see selected for each month. We’ll reveal the winners one by one, and come November, If you’ve Gotta have a GOTT, you can place your order. Click here to see the cartoons in competition and to cast your vote.
Don’t forget to check out what we’re cookin’ in the Scullery and what we all talked about down in the pub. Plus, you can see more of Robin Gott‘s humor–all from the only pen carved from a human funny bone.
- Steve Jobs Stanford commencement speech (http://content.time.com)
- Stephen Colbert Knox college commencement speech (http://content.time.com)
- J.K. Rowling Harvard commencement speech (http://www.youtube.com)