Poetry

Peace Is Alive

there’s a Peace here
a kind that I’ve never experienced
not like a sound Peace
because everyday
kids in the courtyard are
screaming + running + playing
dogs howl and bark incessantly
buses drive by every few minutes
cars honk constantly
old women talk-yell at one another
and the person living upstairs
drags feet and furniture
plays jacks on the floor
and randomly drops bowling balls
all day + night long
at least that’s what I picture happening
no — this kind of Peace
makes me take long deep breaths
like everything is in its right place
people are just living
going about their daily lives
walking in daydreams
so much so
they never move aside when someone is
passing on the sidewalk
and they never walk at a fast pace either
no — most people slowly stroll along
looking at the beautiful architecture
admiring the colorful tiles on buildings
stopping to say hello to
neighbors + friends
with a kiss on each cheek
sometimes
accompanied by a hug
and a smile
not everyone
but most smile
greeting one another with a
bom dia good morning
boa tarde good afternoon
boa noite good evening
but this Peace I speak of
can’t be defined or touched
it’s a feeling — yet it isn’t
it’s an expression — yet it isn’t
it’s a knowing — yet it isn’t
I can’t quite explain
but it fills me
and at times I feel
so full
it wells up inside my chest
embodying
warm + cool
at the same time
then I reminisce about
the children and parents walking hand-in-hand
the homeless man eating a homemade sandwich
the street musician with her guitar case filled with coins
the elderly escorted arm-in-arm by the young
the couples entwined lovingly on park spring grasses
and I well up=full
so full
I feel it spilling out of my heart
into the World
and I know
Peace is alive


— Porto, Portugal

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