Mandela, Hero or Inspiration?

It doesn’t really matter since he was both.

However, he himself derived what he was from his own inspirations.

I would like to mention a poem that was greatly admired by Mandela (and quite honestly, myself as well).

Words from this poem have followed me my whole life, quotes that my dad always mentioned to me but never really understood until a few years ago. This poem will forever portray the best of Mandela, just like the number 46664 portrayed the worst.



Out of the night that covers me,

Black as the Pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul.


In the fell clutch of circumstance

I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

My head is bloody, but unbowed.


Beyond this place of wrath and tears

Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.


It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll.

I am the master of my fate:

I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley





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