Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
As far as possible, without surrender,
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
Be yourself, especially, do not feign affection.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
You are a child of the universe,
Therefore be at peace with God,
With all its shams, drudgery,
Strive to be Happy.
"I should like, if I could, to leave a humble gift -- a bit of chaste prose that had caught up some noble moods". The result was Desiderata which was originally untitled. He wrote it in Terre Haute, Indiana.
1927: Mr. Ehrmann actually did obtain a federal copyright (No. 962402) on January 3, 1927.
Another publishing company, Combined Registry Co. published Desiderata and Robert Bell then instituted a lawsuit against them. However the court found in favour of the defendant, Combined Registry Co. The court found that even though Max Ehrmann had secured legal copyright and properly renewed them, he had however never properly or otherwise attached copyright notices to the copies of Desiderata which he released for public domain.
On June 1, 1956 Rev. Kates became the rector of St. Paul's Church, Baltimore. This church was founded in 1692. In 1959 or 1960, in the Lenten season, Rev. Kate included Desiderata on a sheet of devotional material which he passed out to about 200 members of his congregation. At the top of this handout was the notation: "Old St. Paul's Church, Baltimore A.C. 1692". This explains the erroneous attribution with respect to the origins of Desiderata that appeared on so many publications of this poem.