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KNOWING SORROW AND KINDNESS: Poem by Naomi Shihab Nye

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 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 mail letters and purchase 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 every where
like a shadow or a friend.

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