Monday 27 October 2014

All of me

How can I ever thank you enough?

For the way you
cut through the tension that bound my shoulders
that kept my heart closed
and my ears deaf to the truth
- that stopped me moving
even when I heard your call

For the way you
snapped the chains
that kept my feet from dancing
like they were made to

Thursday 23 October 2014

The Grandstand (Happy Independence Day, Zambia!)

Tomorrow is Zambia's 50th anniversary of Independence from British colonial rule.

I lived in Zambia from 1999-2001, aged 12 - 15, at a boarding school where my parents worked.

So here's a poem that sums up quite a bit of my experience there.

The Grandstand

There is a pyramid
In the centralsouthernafrican bush
Disrupting Zambia’s maize field and gum tree patchwork
It stands
Presiding over The Sports Field
That sprints away to the base of the hill with the cross on top
Flanked by tennis courts on the north and swimming pool on the south

Sunday 19 October 2014

No halo

There was no halo -
Like they show
In the paintings

At least
Not revealed to human eyes, most of the time
Momentary mountaintop flashes of glory
But then it was fish and foot-washing and dinner with 'Les miserables'
And maybe it was all a dream?

Sunday 12 October 2014

We are found

And this is like coming home
We stand, sing, dance, drum
Triumphant declarations
of the good works you have done in us
Triumphant -
not because every day is easy
not because everything has worked out ok (just yet)
But because we are marked by a love deeper than deep
And because we’re here
And because we’re alive
And we’re still standing
And even if we’re not we are HELD

Sunday 5 October 2014

On prophets

Below is a passage from one of the books on my list - that's definitely stuck with me. I love the poetic, ponderous way in which Rubem Alves writes - speaks to my soul somehow.  The prophets in the Bible are some of my favourite characters, especially John the Baptist. Something about their wildness and non-conformity and not really fitting in. Standing on the edge, I suppose. Not a comfortable place, but a necessary one. Every community needs a prophetic voice, if they are to grow and move forwards and become all they were intended to be. Prophets speak truth, and prophets get rejected. They see what the culture around them has not yet awakened to. Like Alves describes in his book, creativity and prophesy are often, poetry... Sometimes I can relate to this description below of prophets, and I definitely know people that fit the description. So this is for them :-)