And Tomorrow, who will know you were here?


I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter’d visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp’d on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock’d them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

**The speaker describes a meeting with someone who has traveled to a place where ancient civilizations once existed. We know from the title that he’s talking about Egypt. The traveler told the speaker a story about an old, fragmented statue in the middle of the desert. The statue is broken apart, but you can still make out the face of a person. The face looks stern and powerful, like a ruler. The sculptor did a good job at expressing the ruler’s personality. The ruler was a wicked guy, but he took care of his people.

On the pedestal near the face, the traveler reads an inscription in which the ruler Ozymandias tells anyone who might happen to pass by, basically, “Look around and see how awesome I am!” But there is no other evidence of his awesomeness in the vicinity of his giant, broken statue. There is just a lot of sand, as far as the eye can see. The traveler ends his story.


** **

In A Nutshell

Late in 1817 Percy Shelley and his friend Horace Smith decided to have a sonnet competition – that’s right folks: a sonnet competition! For the subject of their sonnets, Shelley and Smith chose a partially-destroyed statue of Ramses II (“Ozymandias”) that was making its way to London from Egypt, finally arriving there sometime early in the year 1818. In the 1790’s Napoleon Bonaparte had tried to get his hands on the statue, but was unable to remove it from Egypt. That’s partly because it weighs almost 7.5 tons. Shelley, like Napoleon, was fascinated by this giant statue.


Who will be your pallbearers?

Who will be your pallbearers?

Perhaps your first response is “What difference does it make?”  Well, here’s the difference.  I have found that most of the people, whom I respect as successful, have a clear vision of the legacy they intend to leave behind.  What will you leave behind?

If you are willing to admit that you would like “more” of something in your life which could be left behind, what should you be doing?  Does not that “something more” start with your relationships with other people?  Most people come to realize that success is not about “things”.  Materialism is an empty success at best.  Some say that it’s better to be crying in a Ferrari, than in a 10 year old rusted-out pick-up truck.  But those who seem happiest are those who can visualize where they are going, not what they are driving to get there.

So?  Do you have six people who will send you flowers while you can still see, feel, and smell them?  Better yet, would you take a moment’s hesitation to see, feel, and smell some flowers while YOU still can?

Would you be able to enlist the help of 6 people, while you are still alive, to each make two calls per week to help you meet new people?  Would YOU be willing to make six calls per week to find other people who would make phone calls for you?  Developing relationships with other people is the pathway to creating your legacy.

You can have anything you want if you help enough other people get what they want.  Somebody has to be the first to speak: if not you, then who; if not now, then when?  The biggest motivator to action is the realization that time is the greatest equalizer and it is a limited resource.

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