“I expect to pass through life but once. If therefore there be any kindness I can show...let me do it now.”
|Placard for kindness, at the People's Climate March (2017).|
“Guard well within yourself that treasure, kindness. Know how to give without hesitation, how to lose without regret, how to acquire without meanness.”
"The magic in this world seems to work in whispers and small kindnesses.”
|Jane Goodall spent decades studying chimpanzees . . . |
From article about National Geographic Documentary "Jane"
11/7/2017 by Courtesy of Goodall Institute.
- To "be kind" (adv) is "to treat each other as lovingly as we would like to be treated."
These two meanings may depend upon each other, as we tend to be kinder toward those with whom we sense a relationship.
Or is it the opposite?
Or is it the opposite?
Kindness by Naomi Shihab Nye
Before you know what kindness really is you must lose things, feel the future dissolve in a moment like salt in a weakened broth. What you held in your hand, what you counted and carefully saved, all this must go so you know how desolate the landscape can be between the regions of kindness. How you ride and ride thinking the bus will never stop, the passengers eating maize and chicken will stare out the window forever. Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho lies dead by the side of the road. You must see how this could be you, how he too was someone who journeyed through the night with plans and the simple breath that kept him alive. Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside, you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing. You must wake up with sorrow. You must speak to it till your voice catches the thread of all sorrows and you see the size of the cloth. Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore, only kindness that ties your shoes and sends you out into the day to gaze at bread, only kindness that raises its head from the crowd of the world to say It is I you have been looking for, and then goes with you everywhere like a shadow or a friend.
Kindness glides about my house.
Dame Kindness, she is so nice!
The blue and red jewels of her rings smoke
In the windows, the mirrors
Are filling with smiles.
What is so real as the cry of a child?
A rabbit's cry may be wilder
But it has no soul.
Sugar can cure everything, so Kindness says.
Sugar is a necessary fluid,
Its crystals a little poultice.
O kindness, kindness
Sweetly picking up pieces!
My Japanese silks, desperate butterflies,
May be pinned any minute, anesthetized.
And here you come, with a cup of tea
Wreathed in steam.
The blood jet is poetry,
There is no stopping it.
You hand me two children, two roses.
BY YUSEF KOMUNYAKAA
For Carol Rigolot
When deeds splay before us
precious as gold & unused chances
stripped from the whine-bone,
we know the moment kindheartedness
walks in. Each praise be
echoes us back as the years uncount
themselves, eating salt. Though blood
first shaped us on the climbing wheel,
the human mind lit by the savanna’s
ice star & thistle rose,
your knowing gaze enters a room
& opens the day,
saying we were made for fun.
Even the bedazzled brute knows
when sunlight falls through leaves
across honed knives on the table.
If we can see it push shadows
aside, growing closer, are we less
broken? A barometer, temperature
gauge, a ruler in minus fractions
& pedigrees, a thingmajig,
a probe with an all-seeing eye,
what do we need to measure
kindness, every unheld breath,
every unkind leapyear?
Sometimes a sober voice is enough
to calm the waters & drive away
the false witnesses, saying, Look,
here are the broken treaties Beauty
brought to us earthbound sentinels.
Please share your new poem using Mr. Linky below and visit others in the spirit of the community—
Next week Sumana’s Midweek Motif will be ~ Neighbors )
A wonderful prompt Susan. Hello everyone! I'll see all of you tomorrow as I'll be on train again for another night journey. Happy writing :)ReplyDelete
Happy Poetry Day! See you on the road, everyone.ReplyDelete
Good morning, poet friends. Looking forward to a morning of kindness.ReplyDelete
I love that De Lint quote. And rereading here makes me want to reread some of his books. I think I will. It will be a huge kindness to me. :-DReplyDelete
I shall read some of the offerings. And write my own bit on it later in the week.
Mmm, yes, rereading de Lint would be a kindness to myself too! Thanks for the thought.Delete
I just gave away all my deLint books! I'm paring back, but when I saw this quote I mourned that choice. I included it ere out of pure longing.Delete
I've given away many of my De Lint printed books, too--you know in NYC space is an issue. But I always hold on to my audio and electronic editions (thank goodness for adjustable fonts!). Also, I keep my print copy of Memory and Dream close by... for emergencies (and because I absolutely adore the cover). :-DDelete
Although I have been the recipient of much kindness, especially just recently, a cynical little ditty fell onto my page from somewhere. A product of sadness, I suppose; not really my belief system. But still....ReplyDelete
Thank you for posting it, Rosemary. It contains so much truth.Delete
Evening, Poets! Thanks, Susan, for posting the Midweek Motif this week!ReplyDelete
You are very welcome.Delete
What a lovely prompt, and I adored the little film!ReplyDelete
Ah, better late than never!! Nice theme.ReplyDelete