28: In No Time

(She’s jumping.)

When my oldest was a baby, I was always looking forward to what she would be able to do next. She was sitting and I was waiting for her to crawl. Then she was crawling and I was excited about her walking.

With my third and fourth children, I don’t look forward. I watch and enjoy what they are doing today. I know they won’t be doing it very long. She’ll be able to get both feet off the ground in no time.



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.


Constantine P. Cavafy

(Emphasis added.)


I was introduced to this poem on this blog.

6 thoughts to “28: In No Time”

  1. And the best thing is about this poem, is that enjoying your children never, ever ends. Mine are 19 and 13, and I come alive all over again whenever they walk into the room. Have a happy weekend! : )

  2. One of the reasons I love your photography is that it reminds me to look at all the precious snapshot moments that I have with my kids. Even on a long hard day I can capture the images that make this time so special.

  3. Thanks, Lynne. That's exactly it. Some days are so long and without evidence like this I might just remember the fights over whose turn it is to set the table and who left dirty socks on the kitchen counter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Optionally add an image (JPEG only)