We have seen kindness in action during the last several weeks.
My 16-year-old grand girl, Gracee AKA Grace AKA Amazing Grace, was in a serious car accident in June. I’ve been in Michigan (I forgot to mention where I actually was in the below video) since then to help in her recovery. While here, I’ve continued to try to memorize a little poetry. The By Heart Community at Tweetspeak Poetry has been working on “Kindness” by Naomi Shihab Nye–one of my very favorite poems by one of my very favorite poets. I’m sure you’ll want to follow the link over there to read what Megan Willome has to say about the poem, how it made her think about the von Trapp family and the Sound of Music, and how she chose to go about memorizing it. Nye shares the backstory of the poem’s birth in this episode for On Being.
When I shared it with Grace, we both agreed the poem reminded us of her current situation. There she was in her new-to-her car on her way to work at the local Dairy Queen with plans for summer fun and making lots of money. Then BOOM! That awful sound of metal hitting metal as the hood of a pickup truck bashed in her door. She found herself in a ditch where she was trapped for 45 minutes. Her summer dissolved in that moment. Her simple breath (and angels riding shotgun) kept her alive, and we all wake up now with sorrow. But she has an amazing team of kind therapists who have raised their heads from the crowd and promised to help make her senior year of school a success.
“Kindness” is found in Nye’s collection called Words Under the Words, and you can see the version I memorized here.
Does “Kindness” have a special meaning for you?