Keep me from carelessly lobbing the quick barb,
Keep me from dehumanizing others in word or thought or deed,
Keep me from scoring the easy point on top of someone else’s pain,
Keep me from choosing cleverness over compassion,
Keep me from confusing smug self-satisfaction with wisdom and goodness,
Keep me from preferring the comfortable lie over the heartbreaking truth,
Keep me from being swallowed up by despair,
Keep me from wounding when I am wounded,
Keep me tender enough to witness and ache and grieve,
Keep me quiet enough to hear the stories others tell even if they can only whisper,
Keep me brave enough to rise and speak when I must,
Keep me turned towards my neighbor because that is also where I will see you.
Keep me.
Keep me.
Keep me.