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Samuel Ullman

Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind; it is not a matter of rosy cheeks, red lips and supple knees; it is a matter of the will, a quality of the imagination, a vigor of the emotions; it is the freshness of the deep springs of life.

Youth means a temperamental predominance of courage over timidity of the appetite, for adventure over the love of ease. This often exists in a man of sixty more than a boy of twenty. Nobody grows old merely by a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals.

Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul. Worry, fear, self-distrust bows the heart and turns the spirit back to dust.

Whether sixty or sixteen, there is in every human being's heart the lure of wonder, the unfailing child-like appetite of what's next, and the joy of the game of living. In the center of your heart and my heart there is a wireless station; so long as it receives messages of beauty, hope, cheer, courage and power from men and from the infinite, so long are you young.

When the aerials are down, and your spirit is covered with snows of cynicism and the ice of pessimism, then you are grown old, even at twenty, but as long as your aerials are up, to catch the waves of optimism, there is hope you may die young at eighty.

Hi everyone,

Found this poem today. It was given to me when I passed my first Police Dog Handlers course some years ago. Thought some of you would like to read it.

A Dog's Plea

Treat me kindly, my beloved friend, for no heart
in all the world is more grateful for kindness in
the loving heart of me.

Do not break my spirit with a stick, for though I
might lick your hand between blows, your
patience and understanding will more quickly
teach me the things you would have me learn.

Speak to me often, for your voice is the world's
sweetest music, as you must know by the fierce
wagging of my tail when the sound of your
footstep falls upon my waiting ear.

Please take me inside when it is cold and wet,
for I am a domesticated animal, no longer
accustomed to bitter elements.
I ask no greater glory than the privilege of sitting
at your feet beside the hearth.

Keep my pan filled with fresh water for I cannot
tell you when I suffer thirst. Feed me clean
food so I may stay well, to romp and play
and do your bidding, to walk by your side
and stand ready, willing and able to
protect you with my life, should your
life be in danger.

And my friend, when I am very old and I no
longer enjoy good health, hearing and sight,
do not make heroic efforts to
keep me going. I am not having fun.
Please see to it that my life is taken gently.

I shall leave this earth knowing with the last
breath I draw that my fate was safest in
your hands.