As a father, I can only lead, I can only move forward, I can only be the sum total of my experiences. This father’s day, I was given the gift of a realization, a rediscovery and for my children, a gift in return by always giving back to my family.
As a young boy, I discovered a poem by Max Ehrmann, a son of German immigrants, an attorney by profession and a great poet, whose poem has guided me through my life, in most instances. As my daughter graduates from high school this week, the 23rd of June, I offer this tribute to her as a guide to life and the world we presently live in.
I’m sharing it with all of you because it is time, time we take a step back and be thankful for our fathers, our families, wives, mothers, children and friends. As well as giving meaning to those things in life that give us purpose.
I had a brief meeting with my father last week, but as distance and circumstances go, we cannot meet this father’s day.
Thank you to all of you who have supported me through the years with friendship and concerns.
–Dr. Demetri Meimaris
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 to the dull and the 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 to 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 in your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.
Max Ehrmann c.1920