Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Good then, good now

I am once again in the process of moving. Part of that effort is purging what seemed important, but is now countless boxes of "stuff." While doing my clean-up, I came upon the following:

Enjoyment is something that will catch.

Contrary to belief, it cannot be caught.
Some people chase it to many strange places,
to bleak buildings, inside their own homes.
They run and run, passing the enjoyment itself,
to go beyond and find they have run the course,
outdistanced the most distant, and have returned
to find they are catching up on the beginning.

It's poetic rhetoric from master competitor, circa 1976.

I was studying under English prof John (J.D.) Whitney, a man with great influence in my life. John had a long pony tail and rode a Harley. He was somewhat out of the box but taught with a style that made me feel relevant and worthwhile.

Maybe I'm still chasing enjoyment and the poem above holds merit. It's interesting how the poem had a running theme, many years before I became a runner. It's possible the seed was inside of me from the inception.

Reading it prompted me to check the University of Wisconsin - Marathon County website. Sure enough, professor Whitney is still there.

I sent John email, to communicate that what he put into my life mattered then, and it matters now. I hope to exemplify John's style and influence in my own work as an academic.

Thanks John.

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