Learning to Listen

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I started to put my fingers in my ears.
I didn’t want to hear him speak;
the sound of his voice sickened me…
but then I remembered
that this is why we are where we are today–
because we don’t listen to one another.
And so I resisted.
I looked at him there on the TV screen,
rehashing
(what I consider to be)
the same old insubstantial rhetoric,
and I tried to listen.
We need to learn how to listen
especially when we don’t agree.
We need to learn how
to look at one another
and see the similarities
rather than the differences.
To find the humanness in our opponents,
to keep our hearts open,
to look for solutions.
Pretending they don’t exist
won’t make the problems go away.
May I keep my eyes and ears and heart open,
may I learn how to really listen.

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