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Man in the Arena VS Invictus, my thoughts.

What is the common denominator between the prose;

Invictus,  sometimes knows as “The Night that Covers Me” by William Ernest Henley,


The Man in the Arena, taken from Theodore Roosevelt’s famous  1910 speech The Citizen of the Czech Republic at the sorbonne in Paris?

Invictus: tumblr_ma7181DKWQ1rcpzhao1_1280

The Man in the Arena


I’ll tell you; This Man.


Nelson Mandela, famously gave a copy of President Roosevelt’s Man in the Arena to the Springboks rugby captain, Francois Pienaar, before his World Cup Final match with New Zealand in 1995.

That wouldn’t have been inspiriting at all… D:

However interestingly Hollywood; I imagine going for symbolism showed in the movie titled Invictus, President Mandela giving Francois a copy of Invictus. 

Wires are crossed often about this topic, people arguing that the Presidents source of inspiration resonated on one or the other…  BUT I wonder, why not both?

Invictus was the poem that through all the years on Robbin Island, President Mandela, kept about him and recited for strength. Strength for himself & others. It’s really beautiful actually, but the Man in the Arena – have you read it? It helps remind us that we are capable of ANYTHING so long as we know that it’s going to take hard work, guts, blood, sweat, & tears.. we will be faced with nay sayers, but despite all that after we have fallen repeatedly, the truth still remains –

“So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”


This man inspires me: actually scratch that – all three of them do; Henley, Mandela & Roosevelt.

I’ll be leaving in a few days and making my way down to S. Africa. On the 21st of March – I have the opportunity to experience  a private tour of President Mandella’s Cell on Robben Island. There are really no words just yet. I plan to be still, take it in and allow the opportunity to remind me both of my humanity as well as my endless capability.

I am in gratitude.

Rest in Peace, President Mandela. Your legacy of empowerment lives on.


~ Miss D.

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