A couple of decades ago, when it was (briefly) trendy to own autograph books and to ask acquaintances to write wise messages in them, I used to think it appropriate (smart, or clever even) to write part of a verse from the Cat Stevens song, ‘Father and Son’.
The part that goes like this: ‘….. take your time, think a lot, think of everything you've got; for you will still be here tomorrow, but your dreams may not’.
But, now, I’m not sure if the message was appropriate – or even meaningful.
I certainly intended for it to be meaningful for the person in whose book I wrote it. But was it really? What DID it mean?
These lyrics, written by Cat Stevens, latterly known as Yusuf Islam, originally were to be part of a music project set during the Russian Revolution, about a boy who wanted to join the revolution against the wishes of his father.
The musical never came about.
Interestingly, in more recent years the song has been performed by (Irishman) Ronan Keating and was (apparently) extremely popular in the early 2000s.
But (to return to my original train of thought) does it present a positive message or is it just a lot of gobbledygook? (That is, words that are meaningless)?
One other phrase I occasionally wrote in friends’ autograph books was, ‘Opportunity knocks but once; take care in recognising it’.
How does that stack up against the other quote?
I found this similar quote (below) online, so it may be a popular type of message.
The question is, does this really mean anything?
I guess it all depends on who is reading it and what frame of mind they are in and how receptive they are to ‘inspirational messages’.
There are so many ‘deep and meaningful’ pieces of writing to be found on wall plaques - and even on cushions nowadays, that they are hard to ignore.
But does anyone ever really take them in and use them as guides for living?
I expect not.
But they do manage to make us feel good from time to time.
I choose to comment on social issues and write creatively on a variety of subjects - for a variety of audiences.