Several years ago, my beautiful,  supportive friend sent me this poem. It touched me deeply. It reminded me that the beauty and joy in life is not the destination, but the journey itself. She sent it to me at a time when my personal journey did not seem so great. However,  it served as a reminder to enjoy the time, even if I felt a little low. And she was right. That low part of my journey has a very special place in my heart as it was a time of such growth. I’m glad that I found it within me to enjoy even the difficult times.

Shortly after receiving the poem, I met and married a man who truly lives and enjoys the journey and pushes me to do the same. I feel truly blessed, and this poem continues to touch me on a very deep level. Its message is one I want my kids to really, really take to heart.

I share it now, because we are about to embark on a very special journey and adventure for our family.  Fiji, New Zealand and Australia, here we come! I’m so excited, and the kids can barely contain their excitement. You can feel it in the air!

But, I’m also a little sad. So much of the joy of this trip has been the dreaming, the planning, the anticipation, the expectations. Now, we are on our way. I hope that we continue to enjoy the actual destination just as much, or maybe we will just continue to think of it as a never ending journey!


When you set out for Ithaka
ask that your way be long,
full of adventure, full of instruction.
The Laistrygonians and the Cyclops,
angry Poseidon – do not fear them:
such as these you will never find
as long as your thought is lofty, as long as a rare
emotion touch your spirit and your body.
The Laistrygonians and the Cyclops,
angry Poseidon – you will not meet them
unless you carry them in your soul,
unless your soul raise them up before you.

Ask that your way be long.
At many a Summer dawn to enter
with what gratitude, what joy –
ports seen for the first time;
to stop at Phoenician trading centres,
and to buy good merchandise,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
and sensuous perfumes of every kind,
sensuous perfumes as lavishly as you can;
to visit many Egyptian cities,
to gather stores of knowledge from the learned.

Have Ithaka always in your mind.
Your arrival there is what you are destined for.
But don’t in the least hurry the journey.
Better it last for years,
so that when you reach the island you are old,
rich with all you have gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaka to give you wealth.
Ithaka gave you a splendid journey.
Without her you would not have set out.
She hasn’t anything else to give you.

And if you find her poor, Ithaka hasn’t deceived you.
So wise you have become, of such experience,
that already you’ll have understood what these Ithakas mean.


Ithaka — 3 Comments

  1. so happy that poem is treasured:)))

    Have an amazing voyage my beautiful friend. May this voyage be everything you have been leading up to and everything you will come home to.

    May it be as perfect and outstanding as all the ordinary days that lie ahead waiting for you and the wonderful family you and Rob have creating together.

    Ok enough poetry for you lets talk about ME…I will miss you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Hope when you come back I am still alive and have kept my head on my shoulders and made good decisons ok??? Without my savvy advisor it may be tough.
    Your Tarina Lauren Kate forever and a day

  2. Pingback: Quote of the Week | Raising Flowers and Skids

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