Poem: If You Long for Peace

By Pamela Overeynder, True Sun of Understanding On September 11th, 2002, in Austin, Texas about sixty people walked in silence across the Colorado River on a beautiful footbridge at sunset. As we walked, I sensed a deep reverence, palpable, from the joggers and others out for their evening sunset walk -- peace is contagious. After the walk we sat next to the lake on the grass and shared poetry, hopes, fears, prayers, songs, and metta, meditation on loving kindness, along with a sense of aliveness and possibility. I n my experience, sharing poetry with my community is so essential to my/our well-being. Here is my poem.

If You Long for Peace

If you long for peace . . . If you long for peace between Israel and Palestine If you long for peace between the US and Iraq lf you long for peace in the middle of the night If you wake up filled with longing, tears rolling down the slope of your face, for an end to the anger you feel inside, for an end to the troubled confusion of words and actions that can't be recalled,

Come! Meet at the footbridge as the full moon comes up, round and bright, as the wolf begins to howl somewhere far away. Come, feet padded with trust, eyes still moist with longing, and Walk! Walk the footbridge. Walk with fierceness straight across your own lack of understanding, across the bunkered, fear-frozen tundra of your heart. Walk towards the

brightness of freedom. Walk even as warm tears of compassion stream down and down, till they roll off the footbridge and join the dark river below, even now holding the moon in its glance.  Walk till your heart opens like a flower— opens to everyone and everything. Walk till your mind clears and opens, releases its fragrance the fragrance of freedom, and every being, seeing you, knows the same freedom, the only freedom that will yield peace.

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