Always Well Within

Calm Your Mind, Ease Your Heart, Embrace Your Inner Wisdom

“For Our World” ~ a 9/11 poem by Mattie Stepanek

9/11 poem for World Peace

For Our World

by Mattie Stepanek

We need to stop.
Just stop.
Stop for a moment…
Before anybody
Says or does anything
That may hurt anyone else.
We need to be silent.
Just silent.
Silent for a moment…
Before we forever lose
The blessing of songs
That grow in our hearts.
We need to notice.
Just notice.
Notice for a moment…
Before the future slips away
Into ashes and dust of humility.
Stop, be silent, and notice…
In so many ways, we are the same.
Our differences are unique treasures.
We have, we are, a mosaic of gifts
To nurture, to offer, to accept.
We need to be.
Just be.
Be for a moment…
Kind and gentle, innocent and trusting,
Like children and lambs,
Never judging or vengeful
Like the judging and vengeful.
And now, let us pray,
Differently, yet together,
Before there is no earth, no life,
No chance for peace.

Mattie J.T. Stepanek ©
September 11, 2001

Hope Through Heartsongs
Hyperion, 2002
Just Peace: A Message of Hope
Andrews McMeel, 2006

Mattie Stepanek was 11 years old when he wrote this poem on the day of 9-11.

During Mattie’s ‘almost 14 years’ of life, he penned seven NY Times bestselling books of Heartsongs poetry and peace essays, and served as an ambassador for many peace and disability-related organizations.

Mattie died in 2004 due to complications of a rare neuromuscular disease.  You can learn more about Mattie and his foundation at The Mattie J. T. Stepanek Foundation.

I am posting Mattie’s poem as part of the For Our World Campaign, a global peace effort to translate, share, and spread Mattie’s message of peace far and wide.  Please share the link and, if you are inspired, post Mattie’s poem on your blog too.  Thanks for being part of this peace effort!  All my love, Sandra

Image:  Lumbini, World Peace Monastery


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  1. Thank you so much for posting this.

  2. I am in tears. What a wise soul he was…..

    • Jen,

      I too find it so amazing to find such wisdom in a young child. This is something to truly celebrate! Thanks for taking a moment to leave a comment. All the best to you.

  3. A beautiful poem and a gifted child.

  4. He must have had a lifetime’s worth of brilliance in his very short life to be able to write that at 11.

  5. Thanks – it’s beautiful.
    I’ll post a link to it on my blog .

  6. Thank you for this. I have a few of his books and I hadn’t seen this poem. Such an old and brilliant soul.

    I have to share this.

  7. That is an amazing story, and a fitting tribute on the anniversary of 9/11. All the news and blog posts and photos are bringing it back so vividly. But this is the most uplifting and hopeful message. Thanks for sharing it.

  8. Sandra – Thanks for sharing this articulate appeal. I guess he was just old enough to have learned a few things about life, but just young enough not to have been jaded by it.

  9. s mchoudhary

    god bless you are welcome

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