Monday, April 28, 2014

Small Things

Houston grime sticks to my legs;
my summer dress blows in the slight breeze, stirring the smog.


I think of emaciated Clemencia who held my hand and wouldn't let go in the slums of Kenya.
I think of Ashmirah wearing her size-too-big rags, carrying her little brother Raju through the dirty streets of Kolkata.
I think of my homeless friend Cowboy who cried when he sat in my dining room for Thanksgiving because it had been so long since anyone had invited him into a home.

I think of the dirt, the pain, the loneliness.
I think of the hunger, the tears, the helplessness.

Sometimes it feels like there's just too much to do anything, to make any significant changes.

Then I have to remind myself of Clemencia who smiled when I wasn't afraid to touch her because of her AIDS.
I remind myself of the times Ashmirah and I danced on the sidewalks, and the times I played soccer with her brothers.
I think of the joy Cowboy had when he was invited to be a part of my family, if only for a small while.

I was not made to do exceptional things, to save the world, to change the course of history.

I was made for small things, for small moments, for small joys--the joys that come from listening, hand holding, and playing.

Maybe it's all the small kindnesses and small acts of vulnerability and love that will change the world.

I hope so. 

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