Friday, July 25, 2008

Child of the Universe

In participating in the Roundup Extravaganza this year, I discovered a poem on My Scar Smiles At Me's blog, Desiderata by Max Ehrmann. Desiderata in Latin apparently means "desired things". The end of the poem is very inspirational to me. I thought I would share it with you.

Through the events of the last couple of months, I have lost my faith in the Universe, God, and myself. I have often had faith that, as the poem says, "the universe is unfolding as it should". Even if things don't go the way I want them to, I eventually have a realization that everything is perfect just the way it is. I haven't gotten to that point yet.

I can say that I am not at peace yet. I am not at peace with my soul yet. I know I will need to get there, and I have faith that I will get there, but I'm not there yet. In the meanwhile, these words of an American poet that were not discovered until after he died will provide me with some comfort.

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, drugery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.


loribeth said...

I remember quoting those end lines in a comment to someone awhile back; in response to what, I don't have the foggiest memory. ; ) I love the Desiderata -- it was very "big" when I was growing up -- on wall posters, etc., & there was a record with (I think?) Vincent Price reading the poem, & every now & then, the choir would kick in, singing, "You are a chiiiiillld... of the u-ni-verse..."

Striving along with you...!

luna said...

lovely poem, thanks for sharing it.

nh said...

Hello from ICLW
I love the poem. And I hope that you find your peace soon.

Tash said...

Hey, don't worry about ICLW - you already have enough on your plate this week!!

"strive to be happy" is definitely a laudable goal, we should all strive to be happy and seek joy in the small things - for instance, I am all twisted as my laptop is on the arm of the armchair, but that's cause Phoebe cat is determined to curl up on my lap - so I am happy that she wants to be with me (despite what my back may tell me later ha ha!!)

Smiling said...

Glad you find inspiration in it too. That poem has been a huge part of my life since I was in high school - my best friend quoted it constantly, then I realized that it had been the only bathroom read (on the wall) for her entire life. It was read at our wedding. Now I have it on my own bathroom wall (on nail that came with the place at a very strange height - I nearly have to stand on the toilet to read it).

Best of luck in getting to a place where you relax into the universe unfolding. I know I only get there sometimes. I am mostly focusing on the bit about being gentle on myself lately!

Anonymous said...

What a great poem.

Returning your comment for ICLW.

Lori said...

What a great find, Phoebe.

Lost in Space said...

Thank you for sharing this. It's a great reminder to me. I am not to this point either, but still find comfort in the words.

Nit said...

I can see why that poem would bring comfort...I hope your faith in all things returns :)

Sassy said...

That's really touching. Thanks for sharing.

Just Me. said...

Loved the poem.

thanks for sharing.

here from ICLW.

The Muser (aka Beautiful Mama) said...

I too wish you peace...and restored faith.

Rela Pantaleon-Manigsaca said...

Just wanted to share another poem by Max Ehrmann:

"You with the Still Soul

Maybe you have a still soul that
goes murmurless like water in the deep of rivers;

And perchance you wander silent amid the din of the world's grinding barter like one journeying in strange lands.

You, too, with the still soul,
have your mission, for beneath the dashing, noisy waves must ever run the silent waters that give the tide its course."

Take care!

I blog about IF under my pseudonym Arpee at

Phoebe said...

Oh, wow, that's another great poem! Thanks Rela!

Pamela Jeanne said...

It's been years since I read that poem. Thanks for resurfacing it. May we all find peace...