Max Ehrmann was an attorney turned philosopher-poet who lived in Terre Haute, Indiana. He spent his life wrestling with the realities of making a living and following his personal calling to a life of poetry, literature, and thought. Ehrmann wrote A Prayer, which became a message of hope for thousands, but he is best known for Desiderata, which he wrote for himself, ?because it counsels those virtues I felt myself most in need of.? Ehrmann included this work as part of a personal Christmas greeting in 1933, and Desiderata's power and appeal have continued to reach out to and significantly affect readers ever since. Ehrmann died in 1945.