A Life Can Raise Up

You don’t know me,
but we’re connected you see
and not because I live
close by or down the street.
We’re bound together,
because we’re both
human beings.

 
I share the same needs
and desire to live safely,
have food, and clothing
and my family in shelter.
I want medicine when I’m sick
and the best possible care for my
children and loved ones,
because we’re both
human beings.

 
I live in Sierra Leone, Niger
and Syria, Zimbabwe,
Ethiopia and Haiti,
Rwanda, Uganda, Mali
Congo and Somalia
and many other
places far and wide.
And even though there are
oceans between us,
makes no difference,
because we’re both
human beings.

Put judgments aside, (look
straight into my eyes), don’t
intellectualize and rationalize
all the differences you surmise
and reasons you construe
that I’ve failed somehow
so you can lay blame for
these conditions in which I live.
But you know better than that,
because you’re a
human being.

 
If I put out my hand
and gave you my name,
would our acquaintance
seem more real and
personal that way?
Could you then understand
that we’re so much alike?
That my heart feels the agony
of my treacherous life and to
watch my children suffer
gives me unimaginable pain,
I feel just like you,
I’m a fellow
human being.

 
But if you should think that
I’m just too far away and
you really feel stuck that
I’m down on my luck, then
look around your town for
a needy citizen nearby.
Reach out your hand
and give him respect,
spend time and listen, fill
an empty gap, we all have
these stories of how life has hurt
but with caring attention
a life can raise up,
because we’re
all human beings.

Today Bjorn is hosting Open Link Night at dVerse Poets and inviting us to add a poem of our choice:  http://dversepoets.com/2015/10/01/open-link-night-157/

This was previously linked at  Jamie Dede’s Into the Bardo/Beguine Again site for the event of 100TPC 2015 (100 Thousand Poets for Change) last weekend where the topic was poverty and hunger.

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38 Comments

  1. Truth and compassion in everyline. Thank you for the gift of this poem, Gayle, and for joining with us today. You and your work are much valued. xo

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  2. I am happy to say that I know what you mean ~ Living in Canada has opened my eyes to so many cultures and races ~ But underneath all the different skin & hair, we are all the same – parents, children, adults with pains & hurts ~ Thanks for the meaningful share Gayle ~

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    • We have many different cultures and races in Central Florida too and of course homeless, poor and hungry. We need to keep humanity and respect for everyone. Thanks, Grace.

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  3. Absolutely… Why can’t we see past the superficial differences into the most important similarity …we all feel the same pain as people. Well said.

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  4. So many think that distance make humans different. An excellent take on how to bridge the differences we think make us separate. That has always the mechanism of oppression.. Or the lack of compassion

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    • Yes, it’s the “out of sight, out of mind” mythology. Bjorn, you wrote a very meaningful post on compassion…really appreciated your sentiments.

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  5. beautiful suggestion Gayle.

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  6. This is soo touching.. indeed one just needs to look into the eyes of another human being in order to emit compassion & love. Excellent write 🙂

    Lots of love,
    Sanaa

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  7. scotthastiepoet

     /  October 2, 2015

    You speak with real strength and conviction here Gayle – great clarity too… No artifice here.. We get to know how you really feel and what is right…All power to you… With Best Wishes Scott http://www.scotthastie.com

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    • Thank you, Scott. Let’s hope the message permeates out into the world and brings the change we so desperately need.

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  8. I love the opening – the intimacy…as I read I could imagine that those people who are unwilling to empathise may become more and more uncomfortable – if they still have some kind of conscience left..skilfully and passionately written

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  9. Anonymous

     /  October 2, 2015

    The possession of a compassionate heart is the greatest gift anyone could ever receive, and you can claim it. You have this sweetness about you. The kindness you portray in your piece, is alarming to those without a clue. You teach, not only how to love, but why to love. I like this very much fellow human being. It’s a sweet piece of work. Thanks for the eye opener.

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    • Well, thank you, Mr./Ms. Someone…I’m greatly moved by your comment for my message here and for me personally. I appreciate your visit and generous words.

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      Reply
  10. Glenn Buttkus

     /  October 2, 2015

    Only the the ignorant & the insensitive among us would disagree with your sterling message, your plea for heart & soul responses. If aliens land on this planet, we need to introduce ourselves as “earthites”; just saying.

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  11. Yes, we all share humanity…and we need to think about our similarities rather than the things that set us apart. Your poem makes a good points & very poetically.

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  12. i am a weathered worn human
    being.. i’ve been to hell
    and no one
    can hurt
    me more
    than GOD
    and i can
    Love no one
    more than GOD
    as GOD IS ALL THAT
    IS.. but yeah.. i have literally
    commented on thousands of
    poems and actually paid
    enough attention and
    respect to respond
    lyrically
    in poetry
    way in inspiration
    of the words others
    bRinG.. tHere can
    be NO greater respect
    paid to another human
    being than that my friend..
    yet.. on an average visit
    i receive maybe 3
    reciprocations of
    visits out
    of 40 totally
    engaged efforts
    of me soaking up
    the soul of the other
    and responding
    in KiND..
    i am
    a human
    being and
    the fact of the
    matter that i cannot
    hide is SURE i am an
    awesomely PROLIFIC
    AESTHETE
    and cannot
    avoid
    doinG
    that my friend..
    but the main thing
    i shed tears for is that
    there are very few human
    beings here in interweBZ
    land that are human
    enough to pay
    at least
    a respect
    of hello
    to someone
    as awesome
    as me.. wInks but
    that’s Okay
    as me
    and GoD
    carry THAT
    ALLONE MY
    FRIEND..
    SERIOUSLY
    I CRY for OTHERS
    AND NOT ME..
    lip service
    is
    just
    that..
    lip service..
    DOING IS
    ALWAYS
    WHAT
    COUNTS
    IN REAL
    TiME NOW
    sMiles.. i like
    you.. i realize not
    everyone is as
    strong.. smart..
    financially independent
    and fortunate as i.. but
    it doesn’t take
    much
    to
    say
    HELLO..
    and you have
    been kind enough
    to respond to my comments
    here and i thank you very much
    for that friend.. and that is certainly
    more than i ever expect online where
    human
    hearts
    rarely
    rule
    over
    rules..
    SmileS
    charity
    Loves
    at home..;)

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    • Katie, I do appreciate your comments and I always try and visit all who comment on my posts but I haven’t seen any links from you since I recently started back with d’Verse. Please leave your address in the comments here and I’ll be happy to visit you. I apologuze if you feel I’ve been remiss in connecting with you…my fellow sensitive human being. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      • Smiles.. Thank you.. I no longer link with dVerse.. As the administration cannot seem to understand my metaphors.. These words are simply inspired by your words friend and that is gift enough..:)

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        • I especially admire your faithfulness in continuing to comment on all our writings in spite of you no longer posting your own work. I’m also sorry that you feel your work is not appreciated.

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          • Hi Bodirose.. just one kind person like you
            makes it all worth it.. and yes my friend..
            there are a few..:)

            i am diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum with Asperger’s syndrome.. i do not speak until age 4.. in putting words together.. i have great difficulty speaking until my mid-40’s but manage to graduate at the top of my class with three college degrees and retire from a federal government job at the highest pay grade levels..

            i am not diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome until after i come down with several auto-immune issues from chronic stress at work.. in my late 40’s.. and additionally gain what is termed as the suicide disease.. type two trigeminal neuralgia.. which is like someone drilling one’s teeth without novocaine.. also identified in medical literature as literally worse than crucifixion..

            Except in my case.. it is in my right eye and ear.. making effective use of eyes and ears almost intolerable for 66 months.. i am a shut-in in my bedroom for those months.. and with little ability to creatively write.. i start writing two years into the illness when i tolerate a screen turned all the way down in brightness.. about two inches from the screen.. as prescription glasses increase the pain.. with associated focus and related nerve issues.. every word.. is climbing a highest mountain then.. in excruciating pain..

            i then have a total of 19 diagnosed illnesses.. and in the end of July of 2013.. God miraculously cures me of the pain.. yes.. literally miraculously cures me of all the disorders.. and i already experience a creative spark for the first time in my life since middle school when i am 13 and write a poem then.. a play.. and just a few philosophical writings in a philosophy class when i am 18.. i have a long.. long dry spell.. of no creativity.. around 40 years.. fostered by the mechanical cognition activities of both work and the information technology associated duties of many years.. and that spirit comes back around March of 2013…

            The reason i give you this background information.. is i already have the life of JOB.. so there is no challenge too large for me now.. and poetry is my joy.. and not something i expect anyone to appreciate.. when i state that the administration of dVerse.. does not seem to understand my metaphors.. it is because they delete 3 of my links after i fully explain those metaphors.. without answering to my defense of the meanings that are clearly defined then.. and still documented on my blogs for those instances..

            i have a sharp pencil.. if you will.. like a lawyer.. and can pick up those duties in a heartbeat when i revert back to the techno-speak of work life.. however.. creativity with the help of GOD literally saves my life.. so it is all a joy.. it’s just a little disturbing to me.. overall.. how society has grown so cold in empathy ways..

            There are basically two forms of Asperger’s syndrome.. generally.. and those two forms are folks who are cold to human empathy and literal empaths like me who can take on the emotions and pains of the entire world.. if i do not take great effort to regulate that ‘gift’.. my friend.. and it has taken almost a lifetime to gain an ability to do that.. for peace of mind and body balance..

            I am sad for the human beings who live this way.. in cold ways of heart.. i am not mad.. i am just sad for them my friend.. and sometimes i vent about the situation.. to regulate my emotions and empathy.. friend.. and i find it works.. and it means very much to me just for the fact that you tolerate and accept me.. this go around.. and do not wipe me off the face of the earth in metaphor of deleting me.. smiles..

            Love to you friend..
            and i hope your
            nows are always
            filled with joy..
            as truly
            mine are
            friend.. as
            there is NO
            better lesson
            in life
            than that
            of A REAL
            ‘JOB’.. SO YES..
            even all that
            misery
            and suffering
            i thank GOD for
            always now
            as it truly
            makes
            me like
            a literal
            superman
            now.. so sure..
            what more can i
            ask God for .. but that..
            i just humbly say thank
            you and NEVER STOP..
            GIVING MY FRIEND..:)

            And smiles.. if you ever are interested in what i do
            you can just click on the katiemiafrederick
            name and that will take you to all of
            what i do.. but yes… technology
            is having a hard time
            keeping up
            with
            me..
            so it does
            take a robust
            broadband avenue
            of access and a powerful
            computer to find what i do..
            but ha! now the iPhone 6s
            has finally
            caught
            up to
            me..
            sMILEs
            again.
            Life is
            Great..
            NOW..:)

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            Reply
            • Katie, I appreciate you sharing your story with me and it seems that I remember you referencing your Asperger diagnosis on your blog at one time. My heart goes out to you for all that you have had to go through. I feel you must have a lot of courage to put yourself out there in the world knowing that sometimes you will be treated unkindly…or misunderstood. I wish the best for you always my friend and I will visit your blog and see if I can follow your technically advanced writings. I’m not so technically gifted so I hope I can understand. I will be seeing you around, Katie, and I appreciate your friendship.
              Gayle ~

              Liked by 1 person

              Reply
            • Katie, I just wanted you to know that I’ve tried several times to access your blog and I’ve been unsuccessful. It just spins and spins and says that your site is “Unresponsive.” I’m not sure of what’s going on, but I’ll keep trying.

              Liked by 1 person

              Reply
  13. loved reading it….

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  14. ^^^
    http://www.katiemiafrederick.blogspot.com

    Thanks so much for trying Bodhirose..
    and yes.. sadly WordPress is a clunky
    platform for what i do..
    a friend talked
    me into moving
    from Blogger
    format..
    and at that time
    people also had problems accessing
    me who were already my readers
    so i keep two blogger blogs
    for those people since
    then.. that are much
    much busier than
    word press..
    with
    1.25 million
    views of what
    i do on Google
    plus.. overall..
    So sure..
    i feel
    appreciated
    enough.. haha!..
    about two and
    a half years
    into all of
    this..:)

    Anyway.. the fastest
    one i will link for you here..
    and you are always welcome
    there.. but it is limited to
    the blogger
    commenting
    feature..
    that not
    everyone likes..
    and now thank goodness..
    the iPhone 6s is robust
    enough with the
    LTE broadband
    access to
    open my stuff
    as smooth
    as my iMac
    desktop does..
    as yes.. my site
    will often not open
    on mobile and slower connections
    then at all either.. but yes.. agaiN
    TECHNOLOGY IS CATCHING UP!..;)

    Like

    Reply
  15. hypercryptical

     /  October 3, 2015

    Wonderful words of who we are and/or indeed could be. Tis sad, that in being human we do focus on our differences and are afraid of each other and regrettably, I think this will ever more be so.
    Kind regards
    Anna :o]

    Like

    Reply
    • Thanks so much, Anna. Yes, it’s fear and I was so hoping that we were moving in a more positive direction but I’m not so sure anymore.

      Like

      Reply
  16. A very important message that we often neglect to act upon. You have addressed all the barriers we put up in our minds that deter us from simple kindness. We truly are all the same, we need the same, we desire the same and we deserve the same, no matter what we look like, where we’re from or what our situations are. I think the saddest thing is that we don’t realize the potential of one simple act of kindness…how far that can go.
    A beautiful, heartfelt poem. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    • You’re so right about that one, simple act of kindness. Sometimes it can change a person’s entire life…no small thing at all. Thank you for sharing your views here with me. We really do need to get our compassionate hearts out, dust them off and exercise them daily!

      Like

      Reply

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