It’s so easy to fall into the routine of defining oneself in terms of what’s missing from life. In some of those moments, where I struggle to convert loneliness into solitude, the tranquil restoration of dreams flowing alongside my footsteps grounds me. When the realization comes that I have been given such a rare opportunity to pursue the dream of having an intellectual life, solitude is the victor of loneliness, and I see life not as a manifest of what isn’t or won’t be but as a collection of what is and what will be. Thank you to my family, friends, and especially my parents for their ongoing support and encouragement, and thank you to my professors for continuing to kindle the ember that glows within my peers and me. Here’s to walking the path and stopping to look at what’s there along the way.

Tintern Abbey, England

from “Lines Written a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey” by Wordsworth
But oft, in lonely rooms, and mid the din
Of towns and cities, I have owed to them,
In hours of weariness, sensations sweet,
Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart,
And passing even into my purer mind
With tranquil restoration:—feelings too
Of unremembered pleasure; such, perhaps,
As may have had no trivial influence
On that best portion of a good man’s life;
His little, nameless, unremembered acts
Of kindness and of love… (26-36)