by William Arthur Ward

To laugh is to risk appearing a fool,
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental
To reach out to another is to risk involvement,
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self
To place your ideas and dreams before a crowd
     is to being called naive
To love is to risk not being loved in return,
To live is to risk dying
To hope is to risk despair,
To try is to risk to failure.

But risks must be taken because the greatest
    risk in life is to risk nothing.
The person who risks nothing, does nothing,
    has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing.
He may avoid suffering and sorrow,
But he simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow or live.
Chained by his servitude he is a slave,
     he has forfeited all freedom.
Only the person who risks is truly free.