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The Power of “Me Too!”

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I read this poem again recently, captured by the imagery of this lone father carrying his precious cargo in his slippery world.  It reminded me not only of carrying my own daughter in this holy way, but of the ways I have been ‘carried’ by others.

When I have been vulnerable enough to whisper into the ear of a trusted friend that I am struggling in some particular way, the carrying shows up in myriad ways.  Ultimately, I sense that what I long to hear more than anything else in these spaces is “me too!”

I can’t really put my finger on what happens in this moment, but I’m well aware of the deeply resonant feeling of not being alone.  There is an unmistakable power that draws me to him in this exchange; a kindness and graciousness that creates a guarded space in which the rain seems to stop falling.

 

Shoulder

by Naomi Shihab Nye

A man crosses the street in rain, 
stepping gently, looking two times north and south, 
because his son is asleep on his shoulder. 

No car must splash him. 
No car drive too near his shadow. 

This man carries the world’s most sensitive cargo
but he’s not marked. 
Nowhere does his jacket say FRAGILE, 
HANDLE WITH CARE. 

His ear fills up with breathing. 
He hears the hum of a boy’s dream
deep inside him. 

We’re not going to be able  
to live in this world
if we’re not willing to do what he’s doing
with one another. 

The road will only be wide. 
The rain will never stop falling. 

Dane Anthony