Monday, December 30, 2013

Mattie J. T. Stepanek: "About Living (Part III)"

I wanted to live
To be
One hundred and one
Years old.
But that is no
Longer my goal.
When I die,
I die.
I cannot predict.
I cannot control.
I cannot change
What is to be,
Which is what it is
And will be
What it will be.
I wanted to live
To be,
And not die.
While I’m alive,
I live
To the fullest.
I treasure each sunrise.
I remember each sunset.
I dance every dance and
I sing every song and
I celebrate every moment.
I wanted to live
To be.
I am spending my time
On earth before death
Rather than dying,
And not wasting a moment
Of the precious gifts
Of time and
Of life and
Of being, for now.

"About Living (Part III)" by Mattie J. T. Stepanek, from Reflections of a Peacemaker: A Portrait Through Heartsongs, edited by Jennifer Smith Stepanek. © Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2005.  

Curator's note: Mattie died at the age of 14 years, having become a poet, best-selling author, peace activist, and prominent voice for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Before his death in June 2004, his five volumes of "heartsongs" poetry had already sold more than a million copies. Reflections of a Peacemaker was his final volume.

Image credit: "Though My Heart Is Torn," oil on museum quality, archival Gessobord, by Karen Mathison Schmidt © 2011 (originally color).

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