To My Grandchild by Karen Leslie Hernandez 


You’re not born yet.
You’re still an idea
A thought.
Yet
I think of you often.
I hope for you.
I wonder what life will be like
For you.

When you arrive
Will each breath
Be easy?
Will you have
Places to run?
Trees to climb
Glaciers to marvel
Oceans to explore
Whales to watch
Turtles to hatch.
Will elephants trumpet?
Wolves howl
Roosters crow
And lions hunt.
Will rain soak?
Will snow fall from the sky
Or will it be ash?
Instead.

On a planet that’s angry
I wonder.

Will humans be?
Kinder
Wiser
Loving
Good
Caring
Better.
Or
Violent
Deadly
Selfish
Void
Tired
Scared.
Too tolerant
Of intolerance.

When stardust forms you
I wonder.

Will people still live?
In tents on streets
Encampments
In cars
In fear?
Without enough food
Unequal.
Will healthcare be?
For all.
Or
Withheld
For the entitled
Still.
Will you live?
Safely
Securely
Warmly
Belly full
Happily.
Will race
Religion
Culture
Ethnicity
Matter?
Still.

I fear.

Will bullets still fly?
Through your classroom.
At Temple.
Through streets.
At Mosque.
By store clerks.
To music.
While dancing.
In Church.
On freeways.
At home.
While the smell of garlic
And gunpowder
Infuse the air.

I wonder what life will be like
For you.

When you are born
Will Iraq know peace?
Will I be here?
Will Syria fall silent?
Will America accept?
Will you meet me?
Will Myanmar coexist?
Will Afghanistan thrive, finally?
Will you understand?
Will the world know?
Will Israelis
And Palestinians
Coexist?
Will tyranny be laughable?
Will we care?
Because I do.

I marvel.

Because somehow
Still
In the darkness
There will be
Laughter
Family
Friends
Time
Goodness
Light.
And Helpers.

I hope for you.

That your life
Exists.
Gives.
Understands.
Reads.
Listens.
Sings.
Creates.
Dances.
Expands.
Traverses.
Loves.
Thrives.

I hope for you.

That you know
A God
A Higher Being
Who’s loving
Non-violent
Compassionate
Understanding
Giving
Patient.

I hope for you.

A universe
Of stars
Suns
Moons
Vastness.
So stunning.
As it is for me
Your Grandmother.

Yes, you’re still a thought
An idea right now.
Yet, I wonder.
What life will be like
For you.

I hope.

I wonder what life will be like.

For you.
I wonder.

 

Karen Leslie Hernandez is a theologian and interfaith activist. She has published with several media outlets including the Women’s United Nations Report Network, The Journal of Inter-Religious Dialogue/Studies, the Interfaith Observer, and she is the only Christian to have published an ongoing Op-Ed Column with OnIslam out of Cairo, Egypt. Some of her past gigs include designing and teaching an Interfaith Dialogue workshop with Meadville Lombard Theological School in Chicago, as well as spending three years working with United Religions Initiative, in several different positions. An Over-Achiever, Karen has not one, but two theological master’s degrees – one from Andover Newton Theological School, the other from Boston University School of Theology. She did her BA at Wellesley College, graduating with honors in her major, Peace and Justice Studies, where she wrote her thesis on Al Qaeda and their misuse religion for political gain. Karen currently lives in California, works at two faith based non-profits, teaches workshops throughout the Bay Area, is pursuing a Doctor of Ministry degree at Claremont School of Theology, and she is also a certified domestic violence advocate.



Categories: Ancestors, Children, Ecofeminism, Embodiment, Family, General, parenting, Poetry

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4 replies

  1. What a beautiful and, yet, poignant poem! Thank you for capturing so well my own pondering about the future for my grandchildren. To me, it implicitly reveals the crucial importance that grandmothers must be at the table leading the decision for the sake of the young. May it be so.

    Like

    • What a positive post. To all of our children, great grandchildren, great great grandchildren. What can we foster in our world for our children. If interested, “Sophia’s Web: A Passionate Call to Heal Our Wounded Nature.” Take a look on Amazon.

      Like

  2. Oh such a magnificent and poignant poem… The only words that disturb me are those that refer to an angry planet – I don’t believe the Earth is angry; rather that human rage has been projected onto a Living Being who has been pushed beyond her limits to endure and is starting to breakdown under human assault.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Beautiful and congrats! When “the stardust” forms, I know that you will be a force to lead your grandchild in finding the magic that still exists.

    Like

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