Life Advice Where You Least Expect It

Life+moves+pretty+fast...if+you+don%27t+stop+and+look+around+once+in+a+while+you+could+miss+it...
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Life Advice Where You Least Expect It

Life moves pretty fast...if you don't stop and look around once in a while you could miss it...

Life moves pretty fast...if you don't stop and look around once in a while you could miss it...

Life moves pretty fast...if you don't stop and look around once in a while you could miss it...

Life moves pretty fast...if you don't stop and look around once in a while you could miss it...

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    It was about the time where teachers were counting down to AP testing week when AP Literature students received a poetry assignment that would change my perspective.

    I was coerced into reading and analyzing some of William Blake’s poetry (AP Literature) something I would otherwise never have willingly done, simply because his writing usually draws parallels to his religious beliefs, which are not necessarily aligned with mine.

    Any way you looked at his poetry it always involved religion. I am a free thinking soulful individual, who challenges the condemnation and conformity of religion, the conformity of anything for that matter.

    Nonetheless, I begrudgingly read through some of his works, and the message was clear, but a bit abrasive.

    I read the poems once, twice, three times trying to understand the double entendres we refer to as conceit. William Blake eventually captured my imagination, if not my obsession. Blake’s poems “The Lamb” and “The Tyger” yelled at the back of my head, chewing through any cognitive thoughts I had.

    As I struggled with completing the assignment, a very enlightened individual (Mr. Moeller) pointed out an interesting perspective. One that really opened my eyes to so much more than William Blake’s poetry, a bit of an epiphany if you will, one that most kids, especially seniors can relate to. He said the message of the poetry was, in order to grow and understand life, you need experience, and through your experiences you lose your innocence.

    In a way “The Lamb” and “The Tyger” are conceit for high school. When you are entering high school, you are a bit bewildered, you wear too much makeup you laugh too loud, and over dramatize everything, you have an innocence or naivety about you. But as you continue on through the next few years you experience some tragedies and triumphs, and lose your innocence and become a bit more shrewd. Four years of conflicting emotions, loathing, love, conformity, rebellion, and acceptance. A time where we realize, we are not children anymore, it is a time to live, to grow and experience events that will inevitably change our lives. It is a time where living in the moment is beautiful. Looking back on it is even more beautiful, because the experience is what transcends you into adulthood.

     What I have come to believe is that there is no way to fully live life and be a lamb, you at times must be a “tyger” to gain experience and knowledge. Losing innocence does not mean losing appreciation for it or even the beauty of it, in fact, it’s quite the contrary. Experience means that you have stopped overthinking, to caring too much about what other people think, and done what you wanted‒ needed to do.

    Through experience you form opinions and preferences, the list of things you like gets shorter, and the list of things you don’t like gets longer. Thank you AP Literature, thank you enlightened individual (Mr. Moeller), and thank you, William Blake, I can now go on into my adulthood living through experience and all its glory.

 

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