“What is kindness?” she asked.
“Is it being naïve?
Is it seeing no wrong in a person?
Is it looking away from the dark
Is it stepping around any shadows?”
“Not so,” said the Wise,
“Kindness is to know wrong exists and yet
also see goodness that lives right beside it.
Kindness is to call dark by name without being righteous,
to look into the voids and offer them light;
To acknowledge the shadow
and hold a hand to those in it,
compassion to those who forgot what light was.
Kindness is the courage to speak truth
and make good on promises.
It is the strength to keep one’s heart soft
when it might be easier to harden.
It is being gentle with all
and without losing sight of one’s own imperfection.
It is knowing one’s own needs
and the soul’s True North.”
“It sounds like hard work,” she sighed, “this whole kindness business.”
“It is,” the Wise smiled, “as it is also
the work of all life, love, and heart;
of laughter and joy
of likeminded spirits
of light multiplied;
the gift of play
and children’s delight;
the work of Spirit,
the air of all life.
Be kind, and you would have fulfilled
all that is enough.”