Free Verse

Desiderata by Max Ehrmann

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 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 and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your 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 critical 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 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 sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.

(retrieved from: http://www.cs.columbia.org)

Biography: Max Ehrmann (September 26, 1872 – September 9, 1945) was an American writer, poet, and attorney from Terre Haute, Indiana, widely known for his 1927 prose poem “Desiderata” (Latin: “things desired”). He often wrote on spiritual themes. He received a degree in English from DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, which he attended from 1890 to 1894. He then studied philosophy and law at Harvard University. Ehrmann returned to his hometown of Terre Haute, Indiana in 1898 to practice law. 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.

[retrieved from: http://www.wikipedia.org]

Definition: Free verse is an open form of poetry. It does not use consistent meter patterns, rhyme, or any other musical pattern. It thus tends to follow the rhythm of natural speech.

This is one of my favorite poems. I actually strive to live life this way, however, it is more easily said than done. I interpret this poem to be a way of life, how we should behave, etc.

stock-footage-new-york-circa-april-anonymous-crowd-of-people-walk-down-the-street-sidewalk-in-midtown

I chose this picture to represent how you can still be happy when surrounded by chaos. I intend for the picture to show the guy smiling in the blue shirt, still with all the people around him.

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