Brief Moment is a short film by Marco Aslan, made on his travels in Southern France, and covers three divergent cultures and their languages; French, Brazilian, and Italian. This beautiful cinematographic film tames each frame to a focal detail. The film roused me from my usual melancholy, and allowed me a moment to reflect on a poem I read previously, A Psalm of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. An inspiring piece, illustrating lessons in life with each lyrical line…
A Psalm of Life
What the Heart of the Young Man Said to the Psalmist
Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
“Life is but an empty dream!”
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
“Dust thou art, to dust returnest,”
Was not spoken of the soul.
Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Finds us farther than to-day.
Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.
In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!
Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act,–act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o’erhead!
Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.
Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing
Learn to labor and to wait.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
1807 – 1882
The poem is not only inspiring–it helps in realizing that life overall, is not an empty dream–as life is a journey–whether it be a joyful or sorrowed one. With each opportunity, even if we face adversity, no matter how we may get through any problems, life is still an experience–a most precious thing. Those brief encounters–people, places–all are opportunities.
Sometimes, all we need is a reminder.
Enjoy a contemplative moment, a Brief Moment by Marco Aslan
For more of Marco Aslan’s work, please visit his website
Image credit: Marco Aslan