Sunday, November 22, 2015

Dear Terrorist

I woke up this morning thinking of you, so I thought I would drop you a line.  I write to you not knowing who you are or where you are so how to reach you is unclear.

I imagine you are young.  I am a grandmother.  I hope this is not a deterrent to you hearing me out.  I will try to keep it brief.  Maybe you are busy, or hiding.

I know you were small once and that you have parents.  Maybe you have siblings and a grandmother like me.  It is not easy growing up and I know this because I had to grow up like you.  In a lot of ways I am still growing up.

If you are thinking that we have nothing in common, I would have to disagree.  We have everything in common that really matters.  We both have hearts that beat, we breath in and out, we seek joy, feel love, live life, desire much, experience pain, endure loneliness, and cling to hope to name just a few.  We are only human, you and I.

Which is why I am writing to you, wherever you are.  Before you take the next step into whatever terrorist thing you are planning, could you think, really think, about our common humanity?

If we sat down together in my house with whoever your youngest family member might be, my grandkids, your mom and maybe some family photos, a pot of tea or some good coffee, we could talk, about everything.  We could take turns listening.  We might be surprised to find we have a few things we could laugh about together.  Maybe you would change your mind about the suicide vest. 

We are all only human you know.  And really, what is left behind after so many die?  If you die we will be forced to go on without you.  Your dreams and hopes and ability to become great here on earth will be forgotten.  I wonder if that is what you really want?

The Common Denominator

Sunday, November 15, 2015


Startling and unconscionable.  When I think about all that has occurred in the past two days, the uncertainty of day-to-day existence is flagrantly empty of any hint of guarantees.  Which is why my dear friends, the moments we live are so very, very precious.

Wherever I am at this moment, is what unfolds for me to live.  What I want, above all else, more than long life, fame or wealth is to arrive at the end of my life with the certainty that I had in fact lived it.  And how not to come to think that years have been wasted, that I should have done better, that I was a failure, is to begin at this very instant to live with an open heart.  

There are no guarantees of anything except the inevitabilities of the human life span.  Entitlement is perhaps just a myth.  What is certain is the way I chose to live out the moments at hand.  That’s it.  That is enough.  All of the suffering in the world can be quenched.  If it is possible for one of us, I believe it is possible for all.  

Always I am looking forward
Where is my hope?
What choice do I have?

Asking questions about the past
Why was I so blind?
Where was my protector?

Anxiously waking to the sunrise
How will I survive another day?
What if all is lost?

Guarantees are written regardless of the pain
Can I rejoice amongst the deep and silent?
Is there a place free of suffering?

Love must flourish 
Here is our hope
Here is our vision
Here is our joy
Here we must be