The Quiet Work of Justice

There is a moment for mouths to be opened, for shouts once locked up behind closed lips to be set loose.

There is a place for placards to be held high.

There is a space for slogans to be written.

There is a time for treading the path of the marchers.

This is the loud work of justice.

But what about the quiet ones, the ones whose hearts pull deeply down into the depths of grief for their sisters and brothers and lovers and friends....

For the quiet ones, the ones who will never stand behind a podium, lift a hand-scrawled sign, step into the footfalls of a protest....

For the ones who, every day, scrub and wipe faces and bodies and scrub and wipe again and again; who hold babies their own and babies not their own close in arms...arms not raised aloft holding markered words but arms wrapped warm around a fractured heart....

For the ones who walk, not in a march, but beside a needy neighbor, a broken stranger, a shattered soul, a bruised child....

For the ones who pass behind the blinding lights and the brocade curtains of the stage; who catch the falling pieces and right the crooked lines....

For the ones who do the quiet work of justice every day: You are the living, pulsing life-blood of peace in our world.

You may never be a name in bright fonts for others to admire. You may never be a sound ringing through the speakers, a face spotlighted with fame. You may never be feet worn through with marching and protesting. But your feet are still beautiful bearers of justice: Quiet Workers of justice in a world that is often too loud for you.

Walk on, dear one. Walk on behind and around and with your sisters and brothers who march in the lights. Your arms under and near are the beams that hold together the stage of solidarity.

Your feet, making your own way in the dimly-lit moments, will pave the way smoother for those who will walk in the noon.

Your eyes, watchful and waiting, will see the needy in corners, the hiding ones others will miss. We need your eyes and arms and feet. We need your Quiet Work of Justice to strengthen our own shouts, to hold high our tired hands. We need your particular brand of strength.

We are all doing the work of justice with different weapons, different methods, different volumes to our voices. But we are doing it together.

Walk on.