Thursday 27 June. Desiderata
My beautiful Byron,
yesterday I was walking near the house and I found this great little place ‘Not the Mall’ which is a bunch of cool restaurants in a very hip layout. This staircase is there. How cool is this. They have nice new age kind of messages on the stairs.
Start to volunteer
Use your bike
Eat organic vegetables.
Sleep more soundly
I had it on mine and I loved it. I memorized it and could recite it by heart. I don’t know how its dated now, its over forty years later, and often it’s referred to as bubble gum philosophy, but see what you think. I especially like the line “Avoid loud and aggressive people. They are vexatious to the spirit.”
Here’s the whole text.
GO PLACIDLY amid the noise and the 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 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 in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.
By Max Ehrmann © 1927
I always liked the last words. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy. No one likes a misery.
I am so sorry you are not with us this summer. But that is what Adler and Amlot and British family law decided is best for you and they know how disappointed it makes me. So for them its a win win. For us, it is not a reason to be cheerful.
Lets keep trying for December though, Maybe your headmaster will give you a few days off – and we can make it a three week trip? I could take you to Vail for that long overdue ski trip that you would have had in 2015 if Adler and Amlot had not cancelled it after I booked and paid for you to go skiing in Wengen for two weeks. (Along with every other holiday trip that they have cancelled on every occasion when you could have been with me otherwise.)
I found this picture of your first steps as a baby. You used a Ukulele to balance yourself. Boy – you were a cheerful baby. Always striving to be happy.