Wednesday, July 29, 2015

" All of These People"

Who was it 
who suggested that the opposite
 of War
Is not so much Peace as civilisation?
 He knew
Our assassinated Catholic greengrocer who died 
At Christmas in the arms of our Methodist Minister,

And our ice-cream man whose continuing Requiem
Is the twenty-one flavours Children have by Heart.
Our cobbler mends shoes for everybody; our butcher
Blends into his best sausages, leeks, garlic, honey;
Our cornershop sells everything from bread to kindling.
Who can bring Peace 
to people who are not civilised?
All of These People,
   Alive or Dead, 

Michael Longley

29 July, 2015 

Friday, July 24, 2015

"My People Died"

              My people died of starvation and I came here alive, lamenting them in my loneliness...
              I am told,  "The tragedy of your country is only a part of the tragedy of the world; the Tears and the Blood shed in your country are only Drops in the River of Blood and Tears pouring night and day in the valleys and the plains of the world."
              This may be true, but the tragedy of my people is a Silent one conceived in the heads of men, whom we should call snakes and serpents.  The tragedy of my people is without music and without parades.
              If my people had revolted against the tyrants and died in defiance, I would have said that death for Liberty was more Honourable than the life of servitude.
              Whoever reaches Eternity with sword in his hand lives as long as there is Justice.
              If my Countrymen had entered the World War and were destroyed in battle to the last man,  I would have said it was a wild hurricane destroying the green and the dead branches; I would have said death under the force of a hurricane is better than life in the arms of olde age.
              If an earthquake had swallowed my people and loved ones, I would have said it the law of Nature directed by a power beyond the comprehension of man.  It is foolish to attempt to solve its Mysteries.
              But my people did not die in rebellion, did not die in battle and they were not buried by an earthquake.
              My people died on the Cross.  My people died with their Arms Stretched toward both East and West and their Eyes Seeking in the Darkness of the Skies.
             They died in Silence because the ears of Humanity had become Deaf to their Cry.
             They died but they were not criminals.
             They died because they were Peaceful.
             They died in the Land that produced Milk and Honey.
             They died because the hellish serpent seized all their flocks and all the harvest of their fields.

 Mirrors of the Soul;
~Kahlil Gibran

 24 July, 2015

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

"Lichen and Moss"

              Plants, rocks, waters, the land itself with its Sacred sites, Circles and directions participate in  reciprocity.  If you take something from the land-a herb, a rock, a moment's rest in a quiet spot-you must leave something. In the great round of being, all bring Wisdom and Support one another's Life.  Maniilaq, the great nineteenth-century Inupiaq prophet, taught that everything is relationship, like stars in a constellation, constellations within constellations.
              Mountain ranges endure the passing of many generations.  Braided rivers run blue with the blood of glaciers.  The land is audacious with many coloured varieties of arctic flowers, berries, mushrooms and herbs.  The soil is only inches deep, resting upon permanently frozen underground.  Fragile layers of lichen, moss, and alpine flowers make their way through difficulties of the harsh world.
              So it is with me...

~Barbara Flaherty

The great sea has set me in motion,
Set me adrift
And I move as a weed in the river.
The arch of the sky
And the mightiness of storms
Encompasses me,
And I am left
Trembling with Joy. 

~Inuit Poem

15 July, 2015