“Make you the world a bit better or more beautiful because you have lived in it.” – Edward W. Bok
It was another one of those remarkable moments. I read the inscription a couple of times, standing in some of the most beautiful gardens overlooking the famous “Singing Tower” in Lake Wales, Florida. I thought to myself that Mr. Bok most certainly did make the world a bit more beautiful.
Bok, a Dutch immigrant, who educated himself and worked his way up to the influential publisher position of the Ladies Home Journal is credited with making significant contributions to American architecture, education, public health, and social causes. Lake Wales is Mr. Bok’s final resting place, and was his Winter home for many years before he built the Bok Tower Gardens and Singing Tower. Built in 1929 on the highest point in Florida, the tower is constructed of pink and grey marble from the state of Georgia and coquina stone from St. Augustine, Florida. Fifty-Seven bronzed bells ranging in weight from 17 pounds to 12 tons ‘sing’ from the tower to the delight of visitors.
True to his word, Bok donated his home, the tower, and gardens to the State of Florida to provide a sanctuary for people and animals.
Still studying the inscription, I could only wonder . . . am I making the world a bit better or more beautiful? Certainly not to the extent of Mr. Bok, but I can keep trying. In tribute to Edward, here are a few photos from his remarkable gardens.
May you make the world just a little bit better too, and may those remarkable moments always be yours.