March 23, 2007

A Prayer for Children

We pray for children who sneak Popsicles before supper,
who erase holes in math workbooks,
who can never find their shoes.

And we pray for those who stare out in
photographs from behind barbed wire,
who can't bound down the street in a new pair of sneakers,
who never "counted potatoes",
who were born in places we wouldn't be caught dead,
who never go to the circus,
who live in an X-rated world.

We pray for children who bring us sticky
kisses and fistfuls of dandelions,
who hug in a hurry and forget their lunch money.

And we pray for those who never get dessert,
who have no safe blanket to drag behind them,
who watch their parents watch them die,
who can't find any bread to steal,
who don't have any rooms to clean up,
whose pictures aren't on any dresser,
whose monsters are REAL.

We pray for children who spend all their
allowance before Tuesday,
who throw tantrums in the grocery store,
and pick at their food,
who like ghost stories,
who shove dirty clothes under the bed and
never rinse out the tub,
who get visits from the tooth fairy,
who don't like to be kissed in front of the car pool,
who squirm in church or temple and scream in the phone,
whose tears we sometimes laugh at
and whose smiles can make us cry.

And we pray for those whose nightmares
come in the daytime,
who will eat anything,
who have never seen the dentist,
who aren't spoiled by anyone,
who go to bed hungry and cry themselves to sleep,
who live and move, but have no being.

We pray for children who want to be carried
and for those who must,
for those whom we never give up on and for
those who don't get a second chance.

For those we smother... and for those who
will grab the hand of anybody
kind enough to offer it.

~source unknown

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