Our Reflect Series explores the written works of theologians, poets and other wisdom-keepers in search of insight and inspiration. Our hope is that these written words will spur meaningful reflection and serve as a beacon of hope amid challenging times.
Following the recent school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, poet Amanda Gorman penned this work, which she released via Twitter and the New York Times. In addition, she urged people to act, encouraging donations to the gun safety nonprofit Everytown.
Hymn for the Hurting
Our hearts shadowed and strange,
Minds made muddied and mute.
We carry tragedy, terrifying and true.
And yet none of it is new;
We knew it as home,
Even our children
Cannot be children,
It’s a hard time to be alive,
And even harder to stay that way.
We’re burdened to live out these days,
While at the same time, blessed to outlive them.
This alarm is how we know
We must be altered —
That we must differ or die,
That we must triumph or try.
Thus while hate cannot be terminated,
It can be transformed
Into a love that lets us live.
May we not just grieve, but give:
May we not just ache, but act;
May our signed right to bear arms
Never blind our sight from shared harm;
May we choose our children over chaos.
May another innocent never be lost.
Maybe everything hurts,
Our hearts shadowed & strange.
But only when everything hurts
May everything change.
Amanda Gorman is a poet and the author of “The Hill We Climb,” “Call Us What We Carry” and “Change Sings.”