Here are the final lines of Tennyson's "Ulysses," in which the aging hero allows his mind to drift again on a voyage with his brave mariners -- this time in a deeper, darker sea. I'd always thought of The Odyssey as having a happy ending, but this poem belies the myth of rest after striving. At the same time, it promises a greater striving and a fuller adventure.
Tho' much is taken, much abides; and thoughThe topic of these lines, of course, is the voyage of mortals into the realm of immortality, but I think it is also a fitting metaphor for life changes like the ones I will soon be experiencing.
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.
I'm excited to see what my voyage will bring.