To All My Relations

By: Joanne Stepania

Peace is the outcome of Love.

Love is the fruit of Compassion.

Compassion is reliant on Caring.

Caring is born of Understanding.

Understanding is contingent on Knowledge.

Knowledge is gained through Perceiving.

Perceiving is based on Observance.

Observance necessitates Awareness.

Awareness requires the ability

to see without eyes, 

to hear without ears,

to sense with the heart

and recognize suffering as suffering

regardless of color, culture, language or form.

There is but one sky, one land, one wind, one sea. 

We breath the same air, 

sip the same ocean, 

share the same portion of time

as we pass through this moment together.

We are children of the Earth,

no less sisters and brothers.

Gather the spurious boundaries that separate our sibling spirits,

for we are family.

Come into my arms, my limbs, my leaves,

and let me stroke your shapeless self.

Let me know your pain.

Let me feel your truth.

Let me embrace our differences, 

ours sameness,

our uniqueness.

We blend seamlessly, imperceptibly,

distinctions dissolved. 

I recognize you now.

Unmasked.

Relieved of our earthly robes,

we are One.

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