Where We Must Begin (a poem)

These are
my children,
my sisters,
my brothers
     all ages,
     all stages,
     all shades,
     all hues,
     all body types,
     all orientations,
     all gender identities,
     all cognitive levels,
     all physical abilities,
     all religions,
     all nationalities,
     all ethnicities,
     all races,
     all immigration statuses,
     all refugees,
     all languages spoken.
They are
your children,
your sisters,
your brothers,
too.
We are connected
to each one
and must act
as if we believe
it is true.
I am your keeper
and you are mine.
The risk is much greater
to each one of us
if we believe,
if we behave
as though we are
divided,
isolated,
separated,
alone
an island of one.
This is where we must
begin.
  — bshivers

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