In a meadow,
near a lake, I sat lost in a pensive haze,
When at the periphery of my vision
I saw a child....a little girl;
feet bare, hair blowing in the wind
like wheat stirred by a soft summer zephyr.
With solemn brown eyes she watched me,
ready to spring away like a gazelle
at the first signs of danger.
Though I knew not, this child;
I recognized the pain and fear in her eyes.
They were old friends of mine.
In anguish my heart contracted as though squeezed by a giant hand.
To see such misery on the face of this innocent
was more than I could bear.
Still we stared at each other;
neither one speaking, neither one moving;
one of us yearning to be held, the other needing to hold,
both unable to reach out.
In shame I hung my head and cried.
With tiny trembling hands she reached out
to catch my falling tears,
and in that moment she did for me
that which I had been unable to do for her...give comfort.
And in a sudden burst of clarity
that wiped the haze from my foggy brain
I realized that this child.......was ME!
and I embraced her.