The following poems serve as a tool to unleash that greater sense of self that resides pinned up in each and every one of us. Each student is responsible memorizing and reciting the poems listed below by the prescribed deadlines posted on the calendar.  Our Deepest Fear must be completed by the end of the 1st Progress Report period!!!  See It Through,  and  Don't Quit are due by the end of the 1st semester.) ***Note: For those of you over achievers who like a challenge, ***** completing either "If" ,"On My Honor",  "Courage" or "Diversity" is worth a tasty "40 points" for you and one other partner (per person!!!") provided that the other required poems have been successfully recited prior to, and that you have no missing assignments! (** Available after 2nd Progress Report period only!)   Who's up for the challenge!?!
     a.   Our Deepest Fear by Marianne Williamson     
                        Our Deepest Fear is not that we're inadequate
                                 Our Deepest Fear is that we are powerful beyond measure
                                             It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.                   
                                  We ask ourselves who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous
                                       Actually, who am I not  to be!   
                                             Your playing small does not serve the world!  
                                                                   There's nothing enlightening about shrinking
                                                                        so that other people wont feel insecure around you
                                                                             We were all meant to shine as children do.   
    ,                                                                              We were all meant to manifest the power that is within us!
                                                                                            But it's not just in some of us, it's in everyone!
                                                       And, as we let our own light shine,
                                                             We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same
                                                                   As we are liberated from our own fears                                                                 
                                                                          Our presence automatically liberates others!   
        b.   Courage by Anne Sextoncourage fight

    Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live taking form of a readiness to die.

    He that will lose his life the same shall save it, 'is not a piece of mysticism for saints and heroes. It is a piece of everyday advice for sailors and mountaineers. It might be printed in an Alpine guide-or a drill book. This paradox is the whole principle or courage even of quite earthly or brutal courage.

    A man cut off by the sea may save his life if he will risk it on the precipice. He can only get away from death by continually stepping within an inch of it. A soldier, surrounded by enemies, if he is to cut his way out, needs to combine a strong desire for living with a strange carelessness about dying.

    He must not merely cling to life, for he will not escape. He must not merely wait for death, for then he will be a suicide, and he will not escape. He must seek his life in a spirit of furious indifference to it; he must desire life like water and yet drink death like wine.
       academics         service      horses    doctor doctor teacher    
    b. On My Honor
    (A W.J. Gainer, Jr. original work***)       
    On my honor I'll do my best, To excel at VMHS.  VMHS is like home some would say, And I'm lucky to see family every day. This is my school and I'll let it be known, I'll stand up for it even if it means doing so alone.

    I'll be the one who's really strong, and do what's right even when I see things going wrong. Some of my classmates may start trouble, But turning my back just makes the trouble double. It may not even be my business, but then you see, If it's gonna hurt my school then it's gonna hurt me.
    In many different ways I'll be put to the test, To really do my absolute best. To fix things when I can will show that I'm strong, but to let them go otherwise means one thing...I'm wrong. It may be a friend or myself that I'll have to put in check, And doing so may even earn me some serious threats.
    Being the one to speak out sometimes takes guts, but sooner or later we all must step up. For my peers to see my viewpoint is certainly fine. But even if they turn and go elsewhere, the onus remains mine. I have to do this because you see, VMHS's future depends on me. 
    So I hope you can see and understand "my best", and why I can give nothing less to
    c.  See It Through by Edgar Albert Guest     sight   glasses
    When you're up against a trouble meet it squarely face to face.
    Lift your chin and set your shoulders, plant your feet and take a brace.
    When it's vain to try and dodge it, Do the best that you can do.
    You may fail, you may conquer,  SEE IT THROUGH !
    Black may be the clouds about you, and your future may seem grim.
    But don't let your nerve desert you, Keep yourself in fighting trim. 
    If the worst is bound to happen, spite of all that you can do.
    Running from it will not save you, SEE IT THROUGH !
    Even hope may seem futile when with troubles you're beset,
    But remember you are facing just what other men have met.
    You may fail, but fall still fighting, Don't give up what e'er you do.
    Eyes front, head high to the finish...SEE IT THROUGH!    
    Don't Quit" by Edgar A. Guest      run   run
    When things go wrong as they sometimes will
    When the road you're trudging seems all uphill
    When the funds are low and the debts are high
    And you want to smile, but you have to sigh 
    When care is pressing you down a bit
    By all means pray and don't you quit.
    Success is failure turned inside out
    The hidden gift in the clouds of doubt
    You never can tell how close you are
    It may be near when it seems afar
    So trust in your strength when you're hardest hit
    It's when things go wrong that you must not quit! 
     "If"  by Rudyard Kipling if
    If you can keep your head about you when all about you are loosing theirs and blaming it on you.
    If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, but make allowances for their doubting too;
    If you can wait and not be tired by waiting, Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
    Or being hated, don't give way to hating, And yet look too good, nor talk too wise.
    If you can dream- and not make dreams your master; If you can think and not make thoughts your aim;
    If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster, and treat those two imposters just the same;
    If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools, Or watch the things your gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build 'em up with worn out tools.
    If you can make one heap of all your winnings, And risk it on one turn of pitch and toss,
    And loose, and start again at your beginnings, And never breathe a word about your loss;
    If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew to serve your turn long after they are gone,
    And so hold on when there is nothing in you, Except the Will which says to them  'Hold on!"
    If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue, Or walk with kings- nor loose the common touch,
    If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you, If all men count with you, but none too much;
    If you can fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds worth of distance run,
    Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it, And- which is more-you'll be a Man, my son.  

    Diversity by Gene Griesman
    people people people people people judge
    I believe that diversity is part a part of the natural order of things.
    As natural as the trillion shapes and shades of the flowers of spring or the  leaves of autumn.
    I believe that diversity brings new solutions to an ever changing environment, and that sameness is not only uninteresting but limiting.
    To deny diversity is to deny life- with all its richness and manifold opportunities.
    Thus, I affirm my citizenship in a world of diversity, and with it the responsibility to...
    Be tolerant.  Live and let live.  Understand that those who cause no harm should not be feared, ridiculed, or harmed-- even if they are different.
    Look for the best in others.  Be first in  my dealings with poor and rich, weak and strong, and whenever possible to defend the young, the old, the frail, the defenseless.
    Be kind, remembering how fragile the human spirit is.  Live the examined life, subjecting my motives and actions to the scrutiny of mind and heart so to rise above prejudice and hatred.  Care.
Last Modified on September 6, 2017