Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind; it is not amatter of rosy cheeks, red lips and supple knees; it is a matter of the will, aquality of the imagination, a vigor of the emotions; it is the freshness of thedeep springs of life.
Youth means a temperamental predominance of courage over timidity,of the appetite for adventure over the love of ease. This often exists in a manof 60 more than a boy of 20. Nobody grows old merely by a number of years. Wegrow old by deserting our ideals.
Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles thesoul. Worry, fear, self-distrust bows the heart and turns the spring back todust.
Whether 60 or 16, there is in every human being's heart the lure ofwonder, the unfailing childlike appetite of what's next and the joy of the gameof living. In the center of your heart and my heart there is a wirelessstation: so long as it receives messages of beauty, hope, cheer, courage andpower from men and from the Infinite, so long are you young.
When the aerials are down, and your spirit is covered with snows ofcynicism and the ice of pessimism, then you are grown old, even at 20, but aslong as your aerials are up, to catch waves of optimism, there is hope you maydie young at 80.