I went out today with my Nokia N95 Camera Phone for my walk rather than the bulkier Canon. I prefer it sometimes as its lighter. Afterward as I looked through what I had taken, I wanted to subtly enhance the mood … so I very gently softened them with Picasa. I like the effect; it captures how I felt today. Lots on my mind. Lots to think about, so I decided to take a different way. I guess maybe that made all the difference. We went past Irish’s old home. Walked past the fields she’d run in as a puppy, and the road where she would chase cars on too, I have been informed.

I was going to put these shots aside and use them for something else, primarily because I didn’t know how to express my thoughts today. So I went looking through my journals, thought some more, then I decided to go through what I had right beside me. Well, right beside me under the journals, and other books was a Norman Rockwell book of Tim’s parents; inside I found this poem. It was written in 1927 by Max Ehrmann [go here for Wikipedia story].

Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexatious to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.

And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its shams, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

9 thoughts on “Desiderata

  1. Beautiful phhotos :) desiderata was one of the first things i posted on my blog :) never ending in its meaning, wisdom and encouragement :)


  2. I love the juxtaposition of the poem with these images. I used to have this poem on my refrigerator door. Your images capture the peace and gentleness of the poem. Thank you.


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