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Saturday, June 30, 2007

Wishing a happy birthday to a prince of a man

Author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was born in Lyons, France on this date in 1900. He wrote and illustrated one of the most popular children's books: The Little Prince.

It's been many years since I read Saint-Exupéry's work, but the images of it are still strongly set in my mind. The young boy Prince caring for his rose on the small asteroid he inhabits. The grown narrator trying to make sense of the boy he meets in the desert.

I also remember being especially captivated by the exotic nature of his name — just the sound of it seemed to indicate to my young mind some special, almost mystical weightiness.

There are certainly lessons in the book that we can only appreciate after having lived a number of years and made the usual adult mistakes. We all have roses we've tamed and become responsible for, and it takes time for us to realize how important in our lives they've become. Taking a step back to look at the world anew with child-like eyes, can certainly impart some much needed and deceptively simple wisdom.
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