“The world is little, people are little, human life is little. There is only one big thing — desire.”
― Willa Cather, The Song of the Lark
You have a special place in your mind. We all do.
Deep within the wellspring of mind, under the faint footprint of consciousness exists a space where thought is formed. It is here where our greatest ideas are born. But from where they come, we’ll not ever know.
This space deep within the mind is also home to another companion.
Neighbor to idea and parent to dream, is desire.
It is this desire that fuels you. And it silently fuels all of us.
Without desire there can be no achievement. Without this youngling of obsession that forges our spiritual and mental framework, we are meant for nothing.
Without desire, we walk without purpose.
And it is this desire that shapes the world of men and things.
You have desire within you. We all do.
You know it because it’s the one thought that will keep you up at night. It will test your will and your diligence. It will burn your eyes with sweat and blur your vision with long days.
And if you really want this thing you’re after — you will welcome it.
All great men have desire. We desire fame, riches, to leave a mark, to build something, to help someone, to have someone and to make the world better.
We desire a better self, a better life and a better world.
But only few ever meet their desire face to face. Only the true and the tested stand firm, unwavering until their desire is met.
Only those who follow the path of dreams understand this truth. Because only those who travel beyond the path of dreams will obtain their desire.
And nothing will stop them.
“Men go to far greater lengths to avoid what they fear than to obtain what they desire.”
― Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code
Ever since I was a young boy, probably around the age of five or six, I’ve had a continuously recurring thought, and the vision I have is always the same.
This “dream” has been my ultimate desire for my entire life, and this is to live in a lake house.
Over the years I’ve added to this vision.
But, were this desire my reality today, my lake house would be simple.
It would have a gravel drive with a covered garage where I’d park my Jeep. The front porch would be inviting and large. You’d know at a glance that a family lives there.
Chairs would welcome anyone who might sit to watch the setting sun over the light chop of blue water, reflecting the summer sky.
Green grass would blanket the small hill the house sits atop, and it would roll gently, sloping downward toward the lake.
Pine trees and large oaks would shade this world and give it a fresh smell of wood and Earth. And a path would wind down the hill to the shore where a short fishing pier would sit adjacent a modest boathouse.
The boathouse would hold my kayak and a canoe and a small fishing boat, big enough for my family.
Birdsong and cicada would play the melodies of summer while amber and red would color the treetops as fall’s cool wind blows over the lake.
The chimney would loft puffs of soft, white smoke on a winter night. And spring would bring fields of wildflower, dotting the land with fuchsia, yellow, periwinkle and violet.
This is my world as I’ve always known it true.
But this world only exists in the mind.
Yet, it exists. And it only exists because I desire it to be.
Centuries of achievement and triumph have proven to some that desire is attainable — that we can transmute our desire, making it a part of our physical reality.
But many men miss this mark, because the secret of obtaining desire lives within desire itself.
We should all take the time to seek out our greatest desires, to place our hands under the cup of destiny and wash our eyes with fate.
We should all taste of our greatest passions, and be able to hold our infant desire when it is born into the world.
We should cherish it for the time we’re given to hold it, and stand with resolve when it is time for us to let it go, and allow life to flow onward.
My desire has always been a lake house — to sit in comfort and serenity, accompanied by my books and my easel, my children and warm days of laughter.
But my desire is not simply of a lake house. What this place represents is my desire for a comfortable, simple life. It represents the culmination of all my achievements.
The lake house represents an intimate part of me, and a life complete.
This is the difference between a dream and true desire.
To die of old age in this palace of mine, surrounded by life and love, would be a great blessing.
And my lake house will always be so, until I’m able to sit on that porch and watch the sun melt into the water for the first time.
And the last.