"IN Egypt's sandy silence, all alone, Stands a gigantic Leg, which far off throws The only shadow that the Desert knows:— "I am great OZYMANDIAS," saith the stone, "The King of Kings; this mighty City shows "The wonders of my hand."— The City's gone,— Nought but the Leg remaining to disclose The site of this forgotten Babylon. We wonder,—and some Hunter may express Wonder like ours, when thro' the wilderness Where London stood, holding the Wolf in chace, He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess What powerful but unrecorded race Once dwelt in that annihilated place." – By Horace Smith.
The less famous version of the poem - written by Horace Smith and not Percy Bysshe Shelley.
What does it mean? To me it means, all that we achieve in this life will someday fade away.
All the medals we win will someday become scrap metal.
All the discoveries we find will one day have little association with the founder (who invented fire or the wheel anyway?)
All our great times, adventures and escapades will become first distant memories, then foggy memories and finally when we pass they will be forgotten.
What survives is art. Maybe that's why I've always had a passion for it but, so many years I could have spent perfecting my craft have since turned to dust.
Apparently anything put on the internet will remain forever, but in that far future will anyone find anything interesting to search for on October 3rd, 2013 on the Motivating Minutes blog? Time will only tell - and I won't be holding my breath.