7 Blissful Years. Happy Birthday, My Son.

My dear Neo,

It was a 90 year old poem by the time I read it in 1985.

I was in an old, decrepit building, with lots of adults walking in and out, at a time long before Google, Facebook, and your favorite MineCraft.

It was a place much quieter than the Church.

It was a solemn sanctuary for me, a place where I could go to places without leaving my seat, excite me more than TV ever did, and inspire in me to become as inquisitive as I am today.

It’s called a library, my son.

We also used fingers to seek for the index and scroll over the list and, no, we didn’t have keyboards and search functions then, but if we needed help, there was always a librarian.

Someone once said that Google will give you a million answers, my son, but a librarian will give you the correct one. They may be a dying breed, but they are the repository of mankind’s literary history.

Sir Rudyard Kipling may have written it for his son, the way I am sharing it with you, but he drew inspiration from the charismatic yet doomed Leander Starr Jameson.

Now that’s a man who may have lost, but has inspired both his generation and entire country to commit to his vision, without screaming, without whining, without convincing others, but by the simple fortitude of his character.

The poem is 120 years old now but, believe me, it rings true today the way it did over a century ago.

May it guide you in your life.
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