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Poems: “Desiderata”

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Jeanine Gervais, whom I met and enjoyed on board the J&E Riggin windjammer last summer–and we will sail together next summer (July 20-2)as well–along with friend of long-standing June Derr–sent me this copy of “Desiderata.”




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 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 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.

[Found in Old Saint Paul’s Church, Baltimore, dated 1692]

Written by louisaenright

November 14, 2014 at 1:53 pm

Books, Documentaries, Reviews: Reading THE GOLDFINCH, Donna Tartt

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Books, Documentaries, Reviews:  December 21, 2013


Donna Tartt

I read fiction mostly at night when I go to bed.

Last night I started THE GOLDFINCH.


Theo Decker is the opening narrator.  At 13, he loses his mother in a sudden accident, which he survives.

Here’s a titillating paragraph near the opening of the novel:

“Oh, drat!”  cried my mother.  She fumbled in her bag for her umbrella–which was scarcely big enough for one person, let alone two.

And then it came down, cold sweeps of rain blowing in sideways, broad gusts tumbling in the treetops and flapping in the awnings across the street.  My mother was struggling to get the cranky little umbrella up, without much success.  People on the street and in the park were holding newspapers and briefcases over their heads, scurrying up the stairs to the portico of the museum, which was the only place on the street to get out of the rain.  And there was something festive and happy about the two of us, hurrying up the steps beneath the flimsy candy-striped umbrella, quick quick quick, for all the world as if we were escaping something terrible instead of running right into it.

This novel comes highly recommended and is included in those holiday reading lists for gift-giving or for your own pleasurable reading.  Besides, old friend June Derr says its good.

Written by louisaenright

December 21, 2013 at 11:21 am