Today I'm remembering Mattie Stepanek, a 13 year old young man who died two months ago this past Sunday from a rare form of Muscular Dystrophy. He wanted to be remembered as a poet, peacemaker, and philosopher...and THAT he is. He contributed more in his short life than a hundred others do in a long life. His poetry books became bestsellers, and former President Jimmy Carter said of Mattie: "I have known kings and queens, presidents and prime ministers, but the most extraordinary person I have ever known was Mattie Stepanek."
Here is an excerpt from one of Mattie's beautiful poems, entitled "For Our World", written the day after 9/11:
...We need to notice.
Notice for a moment
Before the future slips away
Into ashes and dust of humility.
Stop, be silent, and notice
In so many ways, we are the same.
Our differences are unique treasures.
We have, we are, a mosaic of gifts
To nurture, to offer, to accept.
We need to be.
Be for a moment
Kind and gentle, innocent and
Like children and lambs,
Never judging or vengeful
Like the judging and vengeful.
And, now, let us pray,
Differently, yet together,
Before there is no earth, no life,
No chance for peace.