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Where we find ourselves, this place, this land, this people, this suffering, this happiness, this revelry, this dying.

It makes us love and hate, whereas before, though leaning close to such an emotional precipice, we remained safe, untouched, untouchable.

We have tried throughout our brief history to act without being acted upon, yet this has kept us away.

Away from the violence, the painful words, the rape, the isolation, the disease, the emptiness, the hopelessness.

Even standing here, we are tempted to set around us walls of glass.

We want to see, but not feel.

We will feel enraged, feel violated, yet in truth we have felt nothing at all.

The most difficult part of living in the midst of such manifest suffering, is knowledge.

Knowing that there exists enough food, enough water, enough resources of all kinds, to offer freedom, but there does not exists enough Compassion; this knowledge tortures our mind, the only escape being the rest of ignorance, of selfish distraction, of turning away.

Each time we sit to write, we ponder first the beauty around us, that is so present is the constant song of the birds by day, the opening expanse of stars by night, yet we tend to turn away from this to the pain set in this ring of joy.

It is pain that draws our attention, that makes us such as we are.