Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Quote of the Day (Ella Wheeler Wilcox, on ‘The Firm Resolve of a Determined Soul’)

“There is no chance, no destiny, no fate,
Can circumvent or hinder or control
The firm resolve of a determined soul,
Gifts count for nothing; will alone is great;
All things give way before it, soon or late.”—American poet-journalist Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1850-1919), “Will,” from Poetical Works of Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1917)

Offhand, I’m not sure if I can think of an individual who better embodies the notion that “will alone is great” than Jackie Robinson (in the accompanying photo). Because of him, baseball’s longstanding “color line” gave way. It was a powerful example of how change in sports can make possible change in the larger society.

I can’t imagine the daily abuse Robinson took in his career and the psychic abuses he endured for his “firm resolve.” All the more reason, then, why he has come to be known as a hero.

"A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives," he once noted. His surely did.

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