How do we come by the little bits of wisdom that try their darndest to guide our lives? I can clearly trace how I came across the wise words of the “Desiderata,” penned by Max Erhmann. It was on a bookmark handed to me by my grandfather, David Beatty Russell many moons ago. He had set the type and printed it on leftover scraps of paper from the printing press he ran on the main street of Bay Roberts, Newfoundland, Canada—as he had printed so many other subtle reminders: a kindness prayer, “Footprints in the Sand,” “Around the Corner.” The bookmarks were intended to be tucked into a book or brain and have remained tucked in mine for decades.
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