Sunday, August 10, 2014

Lesson 315: Desired Things


Bonus Blog Post
in honor of the 
HCHS Class of 1989

Congratulations, Classmates!

25 years post graduation and we're still going strong.

It's been two and a half decades since I've looked like this:

My eyes are still blue,
and the hair is still curly,

But thank the Lord for the hair straightener!

Your former yearbook editor is here to recap the weekend, 
and offer some final thoughts before we meet again in


Thanks to all of those who planned the perfect weekend:

Friday night at Dan's establishment, Bootleggers,
Saturday early afternoon tour of Harbor Creek High School,
Saturday late afternoon picnic at Erie's pride, Presque Isle.

Whether you could make all the events, some of them, 
or were only able to watch from this page, 
I will speak for us all and say THANK YOU.

While touring the high school on Saturday, I came across this framed poem on a support pillar in our cavernous library.  It is Desiderata by Max Ehrmann, written in 1927.

As students we heard these words.  I do believe they were read during one of the commencement ceremonies, or at least printed on the program.  These carefully crafted words fell upon the deaf ears of teenagers.  Our minds were on parties and plans and no more homework.  

This poster, now bumping and curling beneath the glass with age, was dedicated to Curtiss L Young, a student of the class of 1973.  Although I walk by it every week, as I work in the high school, I had not taken the time to reread it until Saturday.  I think the words are worth revisiting 25 years later, and have finally become more than letters on a page. They are the things we most desire.

I took some close ups of the print, and also included it in its entirety at the bottom of this blog post.  I switched up the fonts to make it pretty for you and a little easier for your eyes to grab the text.  Because summaries are my specialty, I'll take it upon myself to give you my Eloise version of a synopsis for those of you who don't like to read for pleasure.

Everyone has a story,
make the time to listen.

Be proud of what you've accomplished thus far.

With age comes wisdom.

We are all connected.

Live your life with joy.

You matter.

Whatever the universe throws at you during the next sixty months,
take it all

Desiderata means "desired things" in Latin.  Ask yourself today, What is it that I desire? and seek it.  When we meet again in five years, I want to hear all about what you found.

Below the poem appears a photo video of the snapshots I took of Harbor Creek High School while on the tour.  Thank you to Principal Andy Krahe, for giving up part of his Saturday so we had another chance to walk the halls, within the walls that built us.  I chose Kenny Chesney's song, I Go Back for the background music.  Country music fan or not, I believe this was the perfect song choice.

Until Next Time,
(but my real friends call me Elaine)

Max Ehrmann, "Desiderata"  1927

Go placidly amid the noise and hasteand 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 clearlyand listen to otherseven the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spiritIf 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 plansKeep 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 trickeryBut let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high idealsand everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affectionNeither 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 yearsgracefully 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 yourselfYou are a child of the universeno less than the trees and the starsyou 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 beand whatever your labors and aspirationsin the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreamsit is still a beautiful worldBe cheerfulStrive to be happy.

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