I came across this poem while I was in the Girl’s Club, where I Met a Woman Named Mary. The verses I am sharing reportedly were engraved on the wall of Mother Teresa’s home for children in Calcutta, and are widely attributed to her. However, according to The New York Times, it was actually written by a 19-year-old Harvard student, Kent Keith, in 1968, in a motivational booklet published for high school counselors.
Regardless of it’s origins, it’s a good poem.
People are often unreasonable, illogical,
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you
of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, You will win some
false friends and some true enemies;
If you are honest and frank,
people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building,
someone could destroy overnight;
If you find serenity and happiness,
they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today,
people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have,
and it may never be enough;
Give the world the vest you have anyway.
You see, in the final analysis,
it is between you and God;
It was never between you and them anyway.