A Man For All Seasons

Posted on February 26, 2010 at 3:22 PM

    A couple days after my mother passed away, I wanted to write a song for her memorial service. I remembered that when I was little I found a piece of music she had written. So, I rummaged around the house after her passing to find this music to possibly adapt it to use for the song I wanted to write. Unfortunately, I couldn't find that piece of music of hers. But I did stumble across a little journal that she had kept. The entries in it were made in the few years before I was born in the early 1980s and she only wrote in the first few pages and left the rest blank. I didn't use the text in it for the song, but one of the entries she made was this poem "A Man For All Seasons." She did not write who the author was, but upon searching through the internet for the text to see if I couldn't find the author, which would likely make it her own, I've stumbled across a few poems from others, but not for the entire poem. The first bit about success appears in different forms throughout the internet and is credited to different authors. So, it could either be by Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894), or Bessie Anderson Stanley (born before 1900). But as for the rest of the poem, it's still a mystery to me from whom it was written.

    So, I really like the poem and thought I'd share it because I believe it can be an inspiration to others. My mother was a wise woman and maybe it was divine appointment for me to stumble across this poem at that tough point in my life having lost her. Even though she wrote this before I was born and possibly for her own reasons, it really inspires me because it is a description of a model man that, although I will never perfectly be, I can always hope and make some effort to become. Often, we look at Proverbs 31 in the Bible and see an example of a woman of noble character. Well, My mother seemed to know how to describe a man of noble character.




A Man For All Seasons...

That Man Is A Success

   who has lived well, laughed often

    and loved much;

    who has gained the respect

    of intelligent men

    and the love of children;

    who leaves the world better than he found it,

    whether by a perfect poem

    or a rescued soul.

That Man Is Contented

   who knows the value of quiet


    who has a sense of self,

    a belief that his life has

    meaning and purpose,

    a steady faith that life

    is always worth living;

    who is never at war with others

    and, so, finds it easy to be

    always at peace with himself.

That Man Is Happy

   who looks for the best in others

    and gives the best of himself;

    who can find challenge in hardship

    as well as delight in success;

    who knows that happiness

    is not so much a destination

    as it is a journey,

    a manner of traveling.

That Man Is Fortunate

   who believes that his true wealth

    is measured more by what he is

    than what he has;

    who keeps the child within himself alive;

    who can find adventure in a book,

    majesty in music and beauty

    in the world around him.

That Man Is Free

   who is a friend to himself

    and can enjoy his own company

    in solitude;

    who can appreciate material things

    without allowing them to become

    his master;

    who heeds the guidance of his

    innermost heart and mind

    and follows his own path.

That Man Is Well Loved

   who is rich in admiration and

    free from envy;

    who possesses a natural optimism

    that touches all who know him

    and gives them joy;

    who is modest about his successes,

    candid about his feelings,

    and quick to reach out and share

    both the joys and sorrows of

    those he loves.

That Man Is A Friend

   Who can go outside of himself

    and appreciate whatever is

    loving and noble in another;

    who believes in his friends

    and is willing to share with them

    his doubts and disappointments

    as well as his joys;

    who, once he has pledged

    his friendship with another,

    will keep that trust

    in spite of changing fortunes

    and adversity.

That Man Is Strong

   who has fears, as all men do,

    but who can conquer those fears

    and go on to greater challenges;

    who refuses to bow to

    circumstances or to blame them,

    and who fashions opportunities

    out of obstacles;

    who is not only willing

    to speak out for his ideals

    but willing to live his life

    according to what he believes

    is right.

That Man Is Wise

   who knows that one of the

    principal purposes of life

    is to enjoy it;

    who s the wisdom of others

    but is finally accountable

    to his own conscience;

    who learns not only from books,

    but from flowers, seashells and

    stars, from animals and children,

    from his own experience and

    from the lives of others.

That Man Is Creative

   who can take the odds and ends

    of an ordinary day

    and fashion them into

    memorable moments to share

    with those around him;

    who strives, not only to know himself,

    but to shape himself into the best

    human being he can possibly be;

    who can imagine a world that

    has never been and believe

    that his one life can help make

    that world a reality.

That Man Is Fully Alive

   who has enthusiasm, the magic spark

    that transforms being into living;

    who treasures the uniqueness

    of each sunset and savors

    the opportunity of every sunrise;

    who enjoys fully, feels deeply,

    gives generously and accepts

    gratefully all the wonders

    of the world.

A Man For All Seasons

   He believes in the goodness

    of life,

    the trust of friendship,

    the constancy of love;

    He lives in harmony with man

    and nature;

    He is a source of strength,

    A dreamer,

    A builder...

  He Is A Man For All Seasons.

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