Leonard's Speech

Remarks by Walter J. Leonard, Special Assistant to the President, Harvard University, President-Elect, Fisk University, Memorial Oration honoring the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., Cambridge Public Library, Cambridge, Massachusetts, January 14, 1977.

The remainder of broken promise

The ebbing life of crippled dream,

The ravaged body of raped desire,

Brings me here tonight.


A dream that is being kept alive,

By an unflinching hope,

By the unyielding faith,

And by a sustained belief in the value of self.

A dream nourished by the blood of ancestors,

Nurtured by the joy and sadness of struggle,

Tested by the flame of oppression,

Tempered by meanest and inhumanity,

That crippled dream brings me here tonight,

Resolved to try all over again. *