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Today we focussed on kindness. Charlotte and I consistently benefit from your kindness, and we could not over-state the difference it makes to us when we receive a word of appreciation or acknowledgement. We asked to you to consider now whether you afford the same dignifying respect to each other – particularly the others in your social world who may be more on the margins. Do you go to the same trouble to think about what life must be like for them, and do you act with the same generosity of spirit that Charlotte and I experience? We would really like to think so.

Today we also said “break a leg” to Liz, who is off to Krakow on a writing residency. She’ll be back in November, and Sarah has taken over her office and role in the meantime if there’s anything you need. Remember the sic website is

Don’t forget that our school scholarships application closing date is this Friday.

You can still download the information and forms here:

The Rotary Scholarship team require hand-written submissions on this separate form:

Careers Info:

Stay close to Charlotte’s careers website to keep yourself up to date with scholarship opportunities, CV guides, summer jobs and tertiary application information. Better still, click on the “follow” tab at the bottom right and get everything new emailed directly to your inbox

Home Study – Commences 29 August 2019



Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.
Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to gaze at bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
It is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you everywhere
like a shadow or a friend.

From Words Under the Words: Selected Poems. Copyright © 1995 by Naomi Shihab Nye.


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