Two O’ Clock in the Morning Poetry, #6


Max Ehrmann (1872-1945)
Max Ehrmann
(1872-1945)

Go placidly amid 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 to the dull and ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexations 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’s 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 shamgrass. 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 in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

–Desiderata, Max Ehrmann 1927 
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Max Ehrmann (September 26, 1872 – September 9, 1945) was an American writerpoet, and attorney from Terre Haute, Indiana, widely known for his 1927 prose poem “Desiderata(Latin: “things desired”). He often wrote on spiritual themes.

Ehrmann was awarded Doctor of Letters honorary degree from DePauw University in about 1937.[6] He was also elected to the Delta Tau Delta Distinguished Service Chapter, the fraternity’s highest alumni award.[3]

Max_Ehrmann_statueEhrmann died in 1945. He is buried in Highland Lawn Cemetery in Terre Haute, Indiana. In 2010 the city honored Ehrmann with a life-size bronze statue by sculptor Bill Wolfe. He is depicted sitting on a downtown bench, pen in hand, with a notebook in his lap. “Desiderata” is engraved on a plaque that resides next to the statue and lines from the poem are embedded in the walkway. The sculpture is in the collection of Art Spaces, Inc. – Wabash Valley Outdoor Sculpture Collection.[7]

Ehrmann returned to his hometown of Terre Haute, Indiana in 1898 to practice law. He was a deputy state’s attorney in Vigo County, Indiana for two years. Subsequently, he worked in his family’s meatpacking business and in the overalls manufacturing industry. At age 40, Ehrmann left the business to write. At age 54, he wrote Desiderata, which achieved fame only after his death. –from Wikipedia
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be-gentle-with-yourself

About Pastor Bryan Lowe

A repentant rascal with definite issues, but who is seeking to be authentic in his faith to Jesus Christ. An avid reader and a hopeful writer. Husband and father. A pastor and Bible teacher. A brain tumor survivor. Diagnosed with clinical depression, epilepsy, and now disabled. Enjoys life, such as it is, in Alaska.
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