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For Our World, a poem written on 9/11 by Mattie Stepanek

Mattie Stepanek Poem For Our World 9-11

For Our World

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.

September 11, 2001

© Matthew Joseph Thaddeus Stepanek 1990 -2004
from Hope Through Heartsongs, Hyperion, 2002

Mattie Stepanek was 11 years old when he wrote this poem on the day of 9-11.
Sadly he passed away in 2004 after a long battle with Dysautonomic Mitochondrial Myopathy.
You can learn more about his brief, amazing, inspiring life at his website:


Mattie’s books are available on Amazon.


{ 14 comments… add one }
  • Debbie Gould

    My leadership class has read a biography on Mattie and we enjoyed reading his poems. What a gift and a treasure was this young man. We were glad to see his work goes on…….

  • Truly inspiration, enough words to open the light in any heart. I am truly in gratitude to be hearing this magical and insightful poem

  • It is a beautiful poem. My students will enjoy reading and sharing some of Mattie’s wishes for the rest of the world even 11 years later.

    They will be writing response poems. Please contact me if you’d like to read them.

    • Linda Gabriel

      Thanks so much for sharing Mattie’s poem with your students. I would love to read their poems.

  • Nalisha Lal

    Thank you…for the lovely poem..n I am very grateful for that poem………………………..

    • Linda Gabriel

      I am grateful for this poem too, and for all that Mattie brought to us during his brief yet powerful life. Thanks for your comment Nalisha.

  • Linda Gabriel

    Mattie’s poem For Our World is now available in many languages. http://www.mattieonline.com/For_Our_World.htm

  • Linda,

    I’ve always been so touched by Mattie Stepanek’s big heart and brilliant mind. Thank for sharing this very relevant and inspiration poem at this point in time.

    I agree with Jeni: peace is possible! I’m happy to post this poem around 9/11 too.

  • Thank you for posting this poem. I am encouraging folks to post this on websites and bulletin boards and everywhere around the before the 10th anniversary of 9/11/2001. Peace IS Possible, if we choose to stop, be silent, notice, and then BE peace, in any moment.
    Jeni Stepanek (“Mattie’s mom”).

    • Linda Gabriel

      Dear Jeni,
      I will be happy to promote Mattie’s beautiful poem not just around 9/11 but during the year as well.
      It’s an honor to have you stop by.
      Peace be with you,

  • Truly moving, inspirational and beautiful.
    .-= Stephen Farah´s last blog ..The Archetypes of the Anima and Animus =-.

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