The mantra on our newest bandana is visually represented by hand-drawn marks. There are groups of lines scattered across the coral-colored bandana. Our ‘make your mark’ mantra transforms this bandana into a talisman for your to carry and remember: you can leave an impression of yourself on the world in the form of a mark. Your mark might be words, or it might be action, it might be silence, or it might be raising your voice so everyone can hear you.
Jenni’s inspiration for this design comes from a poem.
I’ll never forget the first time I heard this Walt Whitman’s line:
“...the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.”
I was only in middle school at the time, but I heard that message loud and clear. The world is gonna keep on spinning and changing, but I am here, and I get to make my mark. I get to contribute a verse.
At that time, I thought the mark had to be big, nearly visible from space, to count. Like winning the Nobel Prize or something equally huge. But I’ve come to realize, as I think about those who have left their mark on me, it is far more subtle. These folks may not even realize the mark they made, but their courage, kindness, empathy, humor and vulnerability helped me find and value those same qualities in myself. They weren’t teaching necessarily, but they became teachers to me. They were living models of the kind of human I wanted to be. These teachers showed up as lifelong friends and as a stranger on a busy street alike.
So here’s what I think now: by showing up in the world authentically, by sharing your gifts and true spirit, a mark is made. Choose kindness and empathy not only towards others, but also to yourself. If you do that, a mark is made. By knowing your value, and standing up a little straighter each day, a mark is made. And it’s a verse only you can contribute.
What will your verse be? What mark will you make on this wild world?