"It doesn't interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you
ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing. It
doesn't interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk
looking like a fool for love, for your dreams, for the adventure of being

"It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring with your moon. I want
to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow, if you have been
opened by life's betrayals, or have been shriveled and closed from the fear
of further pain!

I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to
hide or fade it or fix it. I want to know if you can be with JOY, mine or
your own; if you can dance with wildness and let ecstasy fill you to the tips
of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic,
or to remember the limitations of being human.

"It doesn't interest me if the story you're telling me is true. I want to
know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear
the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. I want to know if
you can be faithful and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see beauty even when it is not pretty every day,
and if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge
of a lake and shout to the sliver of a moon, "YES!"

"It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I
want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary
and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for the children."

"It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom you studied. I want to
know what sustains you from the inside when all else fades away. I want
to know if you can be alone with yourself, and if you truly like the company
you keep."   
                                         ---by Oriah Mountain Dreamer

Here is a lnk to a page that explains who Oriah Mountain Dreamer is,
and how the above prose poem came to be.