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Poetry Friday -- Peace
Yesterday was the last day of school for my daughters.

We went up in the morning for the holiday sing-along and back in the afternoon to deliver gifts to teachers. (And to hear the kids called out, "See you next year!" and then cracked up.
Some things never change...)

In between, Small One's class presented a short program on Peacemakers.
They'd each chosen one (Ghandi... Cesar Chavez.... Helen Prejean... Pete Seeger...) to research and tell us about.
There'd obviously been some rehearsing because they were clear as bells -- all of them -- talking about nuclear disarmament and nursing the poor and civil rights.

They stood in front of the little village of papier mache houses they'd made and a big bulletin board bedecked with images of the peacemakers. Imagine my surprise to see that the headline on the bulletin board read, "Hope and peace and love and trust, All the world is all of us." I think it's my favorite reading of the book so far, and it was a silent one.  


The kids had all taken UNESCO's Pledge for Peace, too, and I was left with an overall sense of hopefulness that if these 8- and 9-year-olds grow up to run the world, things aren't gonna be half bad.

On that note, and in the spirit of the season, these words today from Thich Nhat Hanh.
Enjoy, and namaste...


Take my hand.
We will walk.
We will only walk.
We will enjoy our walk without thinking of arriving anywhere.
Walk peacefully.
Walk happily.
Our walk is a peace walk.
Our walk is a happiness walk.

Read the rest here... (scroll down)

Read Tess Gallagher's Walking Meditation with Thich Nhat Hanh here...

Listen to Thich Nhat Hanh on Speaking of Faith.  

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DUDE. Can we just clone that school and bring it to middle Tennessee? Seriously. I mean, SERIOUSLY. (Such a great school and so jealous, she mutters to herself)...

That poem is beautiful. You know what it makes me think of? That other great poem you posted recently about NOT HURRYING. Wasn't it written from the point-of-view of a mother who was hurrying her daughter? My goodness, I think of that every day and keep meaning to come back here and find it again.

Anyway, thanks. I needed to read this today.


Sigh. Yes. That was a Marie Howe poem. Here's my post:

And on the other note, is there a heart in your school that you can find to love and make bigger??? So hard to send off our kids off when we're not.quite.sure.

Sigh again...

So much to love in this post. I'm so glad that they used your lovely book as part of their presentation. And that poem you selected is gorgeous - it reminded me, in part, of Cueca Solo (They Dance Alone) by Sting. The first poem on the page you sent us to was extremely powerful as well. Must look for more Thich Nhat Hanh.

You are a Sting pusher, Kelly...

Hmm. Maybe. She says as she listens (again) to "You Only Cross My Mind in Winter."

Beautiful and so nourishing. What a moment when you saw the headline on the bulletin board! Wow. Thanks for the wonderful poems and this gift of hope.

Oh, I know! The headline -- all done up in magic marker. Sigh...

one step/one step/i stop/i take
one breath/one breath/warm sun
above/white snow/below
i breathe/i take/one step/one step

- by Rosemary Wahtola Trommer

This is a winter walking meditation I have loved that reminds me of yours. Usually I think white fog above, but you get the picture.

Blessed are the peacemakers, the smaller the better, for they shall grow up... and lead.

one step/one step
It just always comes back to that, doesn't it?

Do you think they'd let me enroll in your daughters' school? It sounds like a great place, although I guess the library isn't bad, either. We've had no sing-alongs today, though.

Adrienne... I have a feeling that your library patrons are at least this lucky...

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