While I lay sleeping. For Ukraine.

A child on a swing outside a residential building damaged by a missile on February 25, 2022 in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Pierre Crom/Getty Images

While I lay sleeping, bombs fell. Tanks rolled across invisible lines meant to somehow hold them back from eagerly gobbling up land that did not belong to them.

While I lay sleeping ships sailed into harbours claiming the right to take the lives of those who valiantly stood against them and armies marched with guns pointed forward, always forward, intent on killing anyone who stood in their path.

While I lay sleeping, a child swung on a swing outside a building damaged by a missile shattering dreams of peace and people died and babies were born to the sound of rockets falling from the sky.

While I lay sleeping, families fled their homes and mothers held their children tight while their sons poured gasoline into bottles stuffed with cloths and got ready to lift their arms to fight for their country, their freedom, their families, their lives.

While I lay sleeping people fought for the right to live in peace while I slept on, restful in my dreams.

When I awoke, daylight had come but the darkness holds fast to my every breath and fear lurks in every corner of my mind.

Awake, I want to stop the streams of news filling my social media pages. I want to stop my mind’s incessant clamouring for more as if knowing more will somehow make sense of this place where the whole world sits with bated breath waiting for one man to pull or not to pull the trigger that will change our world forever.

Awake, I can no longer sleep believing peace will come if we do nothing to stop the darkness from falling all around.

Awake, I raise my voice and call out for peace. For quick and fair treatment of refugees. For support for those who must flee. For support for those who stand on guard to defend against the guns blazing and missiles flying and bombs falling.

Awake, I turn away from ranting against one man’s deeds and turn instead to finding ways to help those whose lives have been unjustly impacted by what he has done.

Asleep, I dreamt I was powerful enough to stop tanks and pull fingers off triggers and hands off buttons of mass destruction.

Awakened, I know I am not powerful enough to stop war. I am powerful enough to stop fueling its fires with angry words and deeds.

Asleep, I dreamt one voice was powerful enough to make peace happen.

Awakened, I know I am not powerful enough to be heard by all the world. I am powerful enough to contribute my prayers to a world praying for peace.

Asleep, I dreamt I could stand alone.

Awakened, I know I alone am not powerful enough to make peace happen. I am powerful enough to stand united with those who, like me, want our children and grandchildren and their children too to grow up in a world where war is no more because together, we have chosen a path to make peace happen.

Because, if we can make weapons of mass destruction and rocket ships to reach Mars and submarines to explore the depths of the oceans, we must be able to build a bridge to peace.

We must be able to join hands of every colour all around the world and hold our arms out to welcome those who are fleeing war in search of peace.

Together we must. For our world depends on us. And so does Ukraine.

16 thoughts on “While I lay sleeping. For Ukraine.

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