Story type: Essay
The question is often asked, “What becomes of all the Valedictorians and all the Class-Day Poets?”
I can give information as to two parties for whom this inquiry is made–the Valedictorian of my class is now a most industrious and worthy floor-walker in Siegel, Cooper & Company’s store, and I was the Class-Day Poet. Both of us had our eyes fixed on the Goal. We stood on the Threshold and looked out upon the World preparatory to going forth, seizing it by the tail and snapping its head off for our own delectation.
We had our eyes fixed on the Goal–it might better have been the gaol.
It was a very absurd thing for us to fix our eyes on the Goal. It strained our vision and took our attention from our work. We lost our grip on the present.
To think of the Goal is to travel the distance over and over in your mind and dwell on how awfully far off it is. We have so little mind–doing business on such a limited capital of intellect–that to wear it threadbare looking for a far-off thing is to get hopelessly stranded in Siegel, Cooper & Company.
Of course, Siegel, Cooper & Company is all right, too, but the point is this–it wasn’t the Goal!
A goodly dash of indifference is a requisite in the formula for doing a great work.
No one knows what the Goal is–we are all sailing under sealed orders.
Do your work to-day, doing it the best you can, and live one day at a time. The man that does this is conserving his God-given energy, and not spinning it out into tenuous spider threads so fragile and filmy that unkind Fate will probably brush it away.
To do your work well to-day, is the certain preparation for something better to-morrow. The past has gone from us forever; the future we cannot reach; the present alone is ours. Each day’s work is a preparation for the next day’s duties.
Live in the present–the Day is here, the time is Now.
There is only one thing that is worth praying for–that we may be in the line of Evolution.