Words of Wisdom

Books of Interest to Lightworkers


In Memoriam

Mattie J. T. Stepanek
Poet, Peacemaker
1990 – 2004




We came to know about this amazing young person several years ago when Mattie began to appear on network television talk shows. Oprah, Rosie O’Donnell, Larry King and the various morning shows brought Mattie’s poetry into millions of homes. Several of Mattie’s books have been featured on this web site in the Words of Wisdom. (We have also grouped them together below on this page).

Mattie became a best-selling author when his book of poetry “Journey Through Heartsongs”, topped the New York Times Bestseller list. The prolific author of five books: “Heartsongs”, “Celebrating Heartsongs”, “Hope Through Heartsongs”, and “Loving Through Heartsongs”, Mattie described his “Heartsong” as “the message or song my heart tells”. He maintained that each of us has our own individual “Heartsong”  which is our “inner beauty, message, songs in our hearts” and it was important to listen to it. Mattie’s first book, “Heartsongs” is “dedicated to those who believe in celebrating gifts of life every day”. In his dedication Mattie reminds the reader to “Always remember to play after every storm!”.

Mattie, who began writing his poetry at age three, shared his thoughts and feelings about life, death, nature, humanity, planetary peace and individual responsibility freely in his poetry and in person. His work has been praised by many, including author Gary Zukov, Jerry Lewis, Chairman of the Muscular Dystrophy Association, and  President Carter, among others.

Mattie’s personal hero was President Jimmy Carter, whom he met in person for the first time during one of Mattie’s appearances on Oprah. Mattie spoke openly about his illness, a rare form of muscular dystrophy, and he became a spokesperson for others afflicted with the disease, which claimed three of his older siblings. Jeni, Mattie’s mom has the ‘adult onset’ form of MD as well. Mattie became the National Ambassador of Goodwill for the MDA in 2002.

Recently, while listening to Mattie reading his poem “9/11” and prayer “For Our World”, we were struck by the connection between Mattie’s writing and that of Russell Paul Schofield. As Mattie spoke his words, we were flooded with the recollection of the inspiring opening verse from Russell’s book, Imprint Unmistakable called “Listen Now!”  It seems appropriate to share this in honor of Mattie:

tell you
this –
not to inform
but rather to confirm
the knowing already known –
not yet accepted
by the mind
conditioned to reject
the inner wisdom sparks
that fall like falling stars
to blaze away their light –
then go dark in uncomprehending
airy resistance.

From Imprint Unmistakable
© Russell Paul Schofield, 1970


Mattie surrendered his earthly body on Tuesday, June 22, 2004, after a lifetime of physical challenges associated with MD.  He was 13 years old.  Mattie is survived by his mother, Jeni, whom we hold in our prayers.

We honor Mattie and his life mission – “To spread peace to the world”.



Mattie J.T. Stepanek

The first publication of Mattie’s poems or Heartsongs, this book is “dedicated to those who believe in celebrating gifts of life every day”. In his dedication, Mattie reminds the reader to “Always remember to play after every storm!”.

VSP Books, Alexandria, VA, ISBN:  1-893622-11-8



Mattie J.T. Stepanek

Making it to the top of the New York Times Bestseller list is a remarkable feat for any author. In the case of Journey Through Heartsongs, it is absolutely amazing! This is a book of poetry written by a remarkable, eleven-year-old boy, who uses this medium to share his Heartsongs – his thoughts, perceptions and feelings about life, death, the beauty of nature, Angels and the gift of God’s love.

Be prepared to laugh and to cry as you take the Journey with Mattie.

Hyperion, NY, ISBN:  0-7868-6942-9



Mattie J.T. Stepanek

“...A heartsong is something deep inside each of us. It’s our sense of why we are here and how we can keep going. It is like a purpose. It may be to live as a mommy or a daddy, or a firefighter or a deliver person, or a child with a disability who teaches others about patience and love and acceptance. Heartsongs are usually easy to hear when we are  young, but we sometimes get too busy or hurt or angry to listen to them as we get older. And, just like any gift that isn’t cared for or used well, it is possible to forget how to listen to the message of each song, But even if we completely lose our heartsong, we can share someone else’s song until we are able to reawaken or recreate our own. ...”

“Hope for Within”, “Hope for Each Other” and “Hope for Our World” are areas for which Mattie shares his Heartsongs. “9-11...2001” and “For Our World” (click on title for excerpt) are two especially moving pieces in this collection of remarkable wisdom from Mattie – Poet and Peacemaker.

Hyperion, NY, ISBN:  0-7868-6944-5



Mattie J.T.Stepanek

VSP Books/Hyperion, NY
ISBN: 0-7868-6945-3


Young author, Mattie Stepanek continues to share his poetry and visions of peace in this latest publication Celebrate Through Heartsongs. Mattie’s impressive communications have been featured on Oprah Winfrey, Good Morning America and other network television shows. Readers of any age will find Mattie’s poems inspirational and uplifting.



Mattie J. T. Stepanek

Hyperion Press, NY
ISBN: 0-78686946-1


Maya Angelo writes in her Forward to this 5th book in the Heartsong series – “It is remarkable that a person so young could have the wisdom to write, “It matters that the world knows we must celebrate the gift of life every day. We must remember to play after every storm”. Mattie J. T. Stepanek means to lift up every person, lift up every human being and carry us all across the finish line, each of us first, each of us a winner.”

LOVING THROUGH HEARTSONGS – is in Mattie’s words the final book of the Heartsong series. While he spoke also of his desire to continue writing and sharing his thoughts, feelings and prayers with the world, the final poem of the book seems to express his inner wisdom and awareness of the impossibility of fulfillment. In the poem, “Timeless Existence”,  Mattie shares his thoughts about life everlasting:

It is nice when people
Notice you are present, but
It is important when people
Notice you are absent.
It is said that “absence
Makes the heart grow fonder.”
We should rather that “presence
Makes the heart grow fondest.”
Then, even when we are
Gone into our future,
We still live in
The present of our past.


Many of these titles are available in audio and electronic format.



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