Tag Archive: paz


sidestepping shards

Artwork from Google



sidestepping shards of splintered glass, beyond the haze of billowing grass,


yesterday came, as today left, leaving me empty within, bereft,


so take my hand and walk with me awhile, beyond the tears, smuggling in a faint smile,


who knows the paths we’ll weave, as time trickles through its merciless sieve,


so take my hand and we’ll walk awhile,


a few steps today, and who knows,


tomorrow may be many a mile … …






Artwork from google




distant shores …



when you strolled into my life, ’twas beset with emptiness, restlessness, strife,


when you ambled into my world, ’twas but a maelstrom which bubbled and swirled,


when your hand took mine in yours, we shared the peacefulness of distant shores,


distant shores where troubles were washed away by the sea, where two souls merged, I into thee,


distant shores upon whose beaches we walked alone, leaving behind a world hardened as stone,


distant shores of love, joy, and of peace, where time itself felt it would cease,


ah! those distant shores of my silly dreams, crushed and broken by waking,

only to be ripped apart at the seams …




We THE People

from google





we the people.






as the forces of reaction grow louder, as the fascism of right-wing politics seem to be burgeoning, as the misogyny and racism and attacks on the rights of those who love differently echoes through the corridors of power, as all of this and so much more fills the air we breathe with a noxious stench, may we the people resist! may we the people erect the barricades, may we the people look back to all those brave and courageous souls who stood upright and fought the battles of yesterday – and not give in to despondency, may we the people resist and in resisting may we send a clear and resounding message to the forces that choose to divide, not unite, engender narrow nationalism not fraternal internationalism, may our message to them be clear, concise and loud – no pasaran! you shall not pass, for though you may wield the whip of power, we the people shall not give in to your tunnel vision of the politics of hate and divisiveness, for We The People always have been, and shall remain many, many more. Take heed of history for you stand rickety on the losing side and lose you shall, despite your gains here and there, lose you shall and lose you will, for We The People have been and always shall be many, many more. many more than the 1%, many more than the vultures of capital and greed, many more than you are, and ever shall be. 




We The People are many, many more.




Amandla!


Venceremos!


Aluta Continua!


We SHALL Overcome!





Jazz Artwork from Google



hugging hope …




years days moments minutes hours months weeks decades,


pockmarked,

weary,


skidding,

clinging onto,

raging roads,


hobbled,

shovelled,

dragged deep,


wrestling demons without,

within,


yet always,

always,


hugging hope,



as night yawns,

and a new day dawns …




Artwork from Google

in love with hope

artwork from google




in love with hope …




she comes to me,

offering solace, gentle words whispered in my ear,


she placates me,

her words a tender caress, dispelling fear,


she seduces me, as sure as she breathes fire into my soul,


she teases me, offering glimpses of the promise of being whole,


she heals me, when i’m down, battered blue black,


she picks me up, shuffling my self as bones achingly crack.




in love with her, i know now, without her, i would not cope,


in love with her, i know now, she is abiding hope,


hope lives,

hope breathes,


always … …



Picasso’s ‘Dove of Peace’ – artwork from google

artwork from google





hope …



fingers raw, bruised and sore,
masks stripped, truth tearing at the core,

feelings forgotten, discarded and rotten,
emptiness scratching at the bottom,

moments fungal, trapped in this desolate jungle,
scalding pride to ashes cold and humble,

dreams trashed, memories adrift, lashed,
wheels of lives callously slashed …


still, yet, always,


hope persists,

through life’s turns and twists,


hope never dies,


hope resists …



artwork from google



Ndebele Artwork – South Africa



the veiled connection … 


when two souls connect, far beyond the constraints of place, of that or of this lifetime,


when two hearts connect, thud-thuddingly beating to the same rhyme,


when two minds connect, forging a kinship beyond the shackles of merciless time,


a veiled connection, an intricately woven bouquet of emotions begin to intertwine.




the connection that fuses, melding two people, must be restrained by circumstance and societal norms,


the connection that fuses, melding two people, can hardly be truly known, for love appears in infinite forms,


the connection that fuses, melding her thoughts with mine, caresses each moment as each moment magically transforms.




such are the frivolous machinations of fate,


such are the oblivious workings of time, at times too early, at times just a second or two too late,


such are the truths we realise but at what cost, for the key handed down to us may not be for our specific gate.




the random sense of humour that destiny and fate do often betray, leaves scars, not smiles along the way,


the random sense of humour that life often displays, condemns a soul to the bleakness of the foggy grey,


the random sense of humour that determines who loves, and who doesn’t, seem like a trick that the rolling dice of fate may play.




the timing of a veiled connection forged in destiny’s blurry haze, leaves hearts and souls scorching, ablaze,


the timing of a veiled connection often determines the bends in many pathways, rarely missing a beat to reduce feelings into a series of tragi-comic plays,


and so it goes, that the timing of a veiled connection is crucial to the direction the pendulum of love sways,


more often than not abandoning souls,


to be forever lost in an indecipherable maze …



Ndebele Artwork – South Africa




https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Esther_Mahlangu



https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_Ndebele_people




sticky cricket midnight blues …




plucked

teased


drummed

tugged


pulled

lured


seduced

embraced


by a dream


and though

dreams too must take flight


as shall this fantastical night


of

kissing nightingales


to the cricketty-crick

of a solitary cricket …


“life, eh old chap, sticky wicket”





The Physics of Love






the physics of love …



for Carl Sagan (november 9, 1934 – december 20, 1996).





made of starstuff*, you and i, the random crossed paths of our orbits, reaching deeper into the quarks and gluons that bind us together, tiny strings, weaving a tapestry of oneness.

made of starstuff, you and i, intertwined synapses flowing through neural networks, somehow, in the ways of the cosmos, fusing these two beating hearts together.

made of starstuff, you and i, the unfathomable meeting of mind and soul, beyond the knowable, yet forging the knots, linking us in an unending entanglement of distilled love.

made of starstuff, you and i, the touch of our lips, the feel of our heartbeats, the brushing of our fingertips, remaining so inexplicably unquantifiable,

and felt,
so deeply immeasurable.




( * inspired by Dr. Carl Sagan and by Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson )







for Carl …



for Carl Sagan (november 9, 1934 – december 20, 1996)




when you visited us each week,
                    stirring wonder in all,

billions of synapses fired,
         or according to my teachers at the time,
         misfired!

        

                           and yet you comforted us,
                          your reason,
             logic,
                       and,

                dedication to the facts and always,
          
                              always
            to the science,
               and to science,

mentored us.

… and so as you left us here on this pale blue dot,

                you still live in the starstuff,

the stuff of life,
                                     mingling with the infinite depths of the cosmos,
                      
                      and as you taught us,
                          that there are more stars in the universe than all the grains of sand on all the beaches of earth,

                               still your vision lives within us all,
                       a testament to your humanism,
                    your genius,
             your warmth and all that you left behind,

& that, that humanity of yours,

             shall live on in the imagination of this speck of starstuff,
                as it floats,
                on the vastness of the great cosmic ocean …




( dedicated to the memory of Dr. Carl Sagan )






Passion in B-Major …





plucking heartstrings, the melody of our love soars,


mingling with thunderous desire as the crescendo roars.




whistling beyond the disjointed rhymes of our past,


a segue to the onset of the years ahead, a love meant to perennially last.




you take my hand in yours, and our fingers clasp tight, holding on for the longest time,


while the harmony of your beating heart and mine, thud-thuds in tuneful rhyme.




the tomorrows yet to unfurl may be harsh, our path ahead littered with nettles,


yet our love, our togetherness, our bond remains firm, as each passing storm as it always does, settles.




we are as one, the music stoking the furnace deep within our shared heart,


we are as one, our orchestral confluence intertwined, never to ever depart …




the passion of my pen: you




the passion of my pen: you …




this pen dipped in ink, scribbles odes to you,


my fingers caressing your bare back, paints words of a love so true,


while in your eyes swirls the raging fire,


the passion of my pen scalds my being entire.




i may scribble a poem or two, my meagre words unable to convey,


the roaring furnace you have lit within me, this dervish who in a daze does sway,


sprinkling kisses on your honeydew lips,


feeling the desire raw and thirsting, from my soul to my fingertips.




your love has breathed life, awakening my slumbering heart,


to beat in tune with yours, scribbling oaths to never be, ever apart,


for a love so complete, so warm and so achingly deep,


was once only dreamed of, in waking moments of thought, and in the cauldron of my restless sleep.




these odes, these poems, are but scribbles on the parchment of shared time,


tucked away in the recesses of memory, finding solace in each paltry rhyme,


assailed by the nettles of days gone by,


emotions billowing like smoke into the bluest sky.




the passion of my pen is the mirrored reflection of your love,


the stroking of your hair, your head on my chest, the bounty we were blessed with, from the heavens above,


when days were humid and sultry, the nights torrid, bathed in the essence of need,


when all subtlety fled, as our hunger growled, wanting it all with an insatiable greed.




i recall those years of long ago, when we danced in tune with each heartbeat,


when our bodies lay entwined, the sweat dripping off flesh, as our minds and souls did effortlessly meet,


i can never forget those minutes that stretched into hours, in the Johannesburg thunderstorms, drenched in the cooling African rains,


your body my canvas, from the tips of your velveteen mountaintops, to the savanna of your rolling silken plains.




i recall every one of those minutes, i can hardly forget the warmth of your breath, as we sighed in unison, skin upon blazing skin,


and were i to never love again, were i to never savour that ecstasy, i will forever bask in the paradise of those memories, and i will constantly keep you, for you will always remain my heaven within …



The Judging of Nelson Mandela




The Judging of Nelson Mandela




1.


“It is an ideal for which I am prepared to die”, said the resolute prisoner in the dock.


He stood firm in his revolutionary convictions, potentially facing the gallows of Apartheid tyranny.


The prisoner and his comrades were sentenced to life imprisonment on an island of shame with Robben Island its name.


They endured the hell of Apartheid’s abyss for 27 long years.


2.


Nelson Mandela walked free on that early February day in 1990.


His years of incarceration did not dilute his revolutionary ideals.


His beloved organisation, the African National Congress with him at the helm now dealt with an enemy hell-bent of sowing the seeds of mayhem.


He stood resolute.

He stood principled.


Nelson Mandela and his comrades negotiated the path which realised the objectives of a free and non-racial and democratic South Africa.


Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress had to make many compromises, in the quid pro quo of negotiating with an enemy busy in the process of fomenting a civil war.


This did not make him a sell-out.


This did not render him toothless.


This did not mean he had capitulated on his revolutionary ideals.


Nelson Mandela and his comrades faced a stark reality – a negotiated peaceful settlement with the Apartheid state or the prospect of further bloodshed and the implosion of South Africa.


This did not render him impotent.


This did not temper his revolutionary fire.


3.


Nelson Mandela and his comrades realised that the white minority regime would not simply relinquish power.


The Apartheid state was already actively engaged in the stoking of wanton acts of violence in order to derail the process of transforming South Africa into a democratic country where all human beings regardless of race would be granted the right to vote and to be no longer being relegated to second class citizens in the land of their ancestors.


There were difficult compromises to be made, there were bitter pills that had to be swallowed.


The enemy would not simply give up the privileges of the white minority without a fight.


Nelson Mandela and his comrades understood that reality.


The cold harsh reality of facing a protracted war of attrition or the birth of a new democratic South Africa from the clutches of Apartheid hegemony.


4.


Nelson Mandela and his comrades in the African National Congress made the hard choices.


They laid to rest the prospect of a civil war, while making gut-wrenching decisions in order to achieve the first goal of bringing to fruition a free and democratic South Africa.


Many were displeased.

Many were embittered.


Many thought this the abandoning of the true principles of the struggle.


They were not wrong.


They had good reason to believe that far too many concessions were made.


They who fought on the frontlines were not being unreasonable.


They faced Apartheid’s bullets and truncheons and torture for years.


Yet Nelson Mandela did not shut them out, but brought them in and invited them to be a part of the hard work that lay ahead in the creation of a new democratic country.


5.


Today, we look back.


Today, we judge Nelson Mandela and his comrades for a revolution denied.


Today, with the hindsight of history, we damn the negotiated settlement.


Today, the failures of the democratic governments that have followed Nelson Mandela’s one term as President, are coldly and conveniently laid at the feet of Nelson Mandela.


Nelson Mandela did not crave power nor status. President Nelson Mandela was a human being, a man of flesh and blood, with his share of faults.


Nelson Mandela never shied away from acknowledging his faults.


6.


Today we dismiss Nelson Mandela as one who sold out the revolution.


Today we condemn Nelson Mandela for the greed and corruption that keeps millions in poverty and the majority of the population who have no access to dignified health care and education and housing and employment.


Today we judge Nelson Mandela as the one who watered down every ideal and principle of the struggle for freedom and for human emancipation.


7.


Nelson Mandela stepped down as President in 1999 after serving one term in office.


Today we are in 2018.


How convenient to subtly paint Nelson Mandela as the one who sowed the seeds of all that is wrong in our country today.


8.


How very convenient.


9.


Nelson Mandela was not the prisoner-set-free to to assume the Presidency of the African National Congress and rule by dictatorial edicts and by personal decree.


The African National Congress and its National Executive Committee (NEC), the ANC’s Armed Wing Umkhonto-we-Sizwe (MK), as well the ANC’s Tripartite Alliance partners, the South African Communist Party (SACP) and the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) played an integral part in the negotiated settlement that resulted from the Convention for a Democratic South Africa (CODESA).


Leaders and political activists like Walter Sisulu, Chris Hani, Joe Slovo, Cyril Ramaphosa, Jacob Zuma, Andrew Mlangeni, Ahmed Kathrada, and many other individuals who spent years in Apartheid prisons and in exile were part of the decision making process.


To hold Nelson Mandela solely responsible for the negotiated settlement that led to the creation of a democratic South Africa in 1994 is both disingenuous and ignores historical facts.


The African National Congress structures on the ground were part of often heated debates as Nelson Mandela and his comrades navigated the treacherous waters of negotiating with a government that was in power and had the army at its disposal and was conducting bloody covert operations in order to derail the efforts to reach a peaceful solution for the dissolution of Apartheid and the birth of a new South African nation.


If Nelson Mandela is to be regarded as a ‘sell-out’, then he cannot be honestly judged alone for the failures of successive ANC governments from 1999 to 2018.


It is a simplistic reading of history to come to the conclusion that Nelson Mandela stood alone as a “sell-out” while once again conveniently ignoring the many other factors that played a part in the transition of South Africa from a racist, tyrannical state to a free and democratic new nation.


10.


Once again, how very convenient.




thank you to my friend Pat Johnopolos for this piece that moved me deeply. please read Pat’s work and follow a truly wonderful blog:

https://wp.me/p9k7Pv-IR




talkin’ racism shattered unblues …



walking along these roads one day,


i met a stranger with much to say.


the stranger and i sat down to dine,


sharing each others crumbs and water under the warm sunshine,


we got to talking about our lives as such,


and as strangers do at first we didn’t say much,


but the warm sunshine and the delicious crumbs of food we shared,


moved us to talk and slowly to each other our souls we bared,


we were not alike, in every possible conventional norm,


yet as we chatted we felt a kindred spirit begin to form,


it matters not who the stranger was, it matters not the stranger’s race and religion and caste and tribe,


as we spoke for hours of this world, these differences amplified by those who feed off hate, the poisoned chalice of apartheidness we were continually given to imbibe,


we spoke of common travails, of the woes that assail us, of the troubles and joys of walking the different paths we chose to walk,


we shared the solace of our common humanity, a feeling of being one with another human being, as we for long whiles sat in enveloping silence, with no need to talk,


we sang the songs of where we came from, we whistled so many of our unique and different tunes,


as the knots of being human were binding us together, soaring over the savanna, the prairies, the oceans, the mountains, and the dusty dunes,


we laughed and we reflected, we acknowledged the sadness all of us humans share, of the thorns and the nettles, each of us talking of our personal pain,


as our cheeks streamed with tears in the coolness of a gentle passing shower of rain,


we knew not each others language, we merely spoke and cried and sang and shared as we ate from our chipped weatherbeaten plate,


we could not understand each others words, yet we understood more than we ever could, banishing the intolerance, the racism, and we doused the furnace of hate,


the stranger and i soon parted ways, with a smile and handshake and a warm tight hug,


and as i walked away, i felt so much lighter, no longer feeling the need for all the baggage i used to lug.


the stranger and i shared one of the rarest thing i could ever find,


stripping away the colour of our skin, the gods we prayed to, the different shapes of our features, the things that in this world separate us, yes, we left all of that behind,


if only for an instant, if only for some hours spent together on our home, this earth, our common ground, our shared space …


… if only for an instant, if only for some hours spent together on our home, this earth, our common ground, our shared space,


one world,


one human race …



in your eyes 




in your eyes …




1.



As another day recedes,


enveloped under the shawl of night,


allow me to drown,

in your eyes.




Moments fleeting,

fickle hands of time unseeing,


allow me to seek solace,

in your eyes.




The trodden path littered with each shard,


regrets this heart wishes to discard,


so allow me to seek refuge,

in your eyes.




i have walked through twisting boulevards of life,


seeking simple joy, away from desolation, strife,


so allow me to find peace,

in your eyes.




2.





In your eyes,


i find,

the gentleness left behind,


away from superficial smiles,


away from fatigue of the walked mile.



In your eyes,


i feel,

at home at long last,


your love caressing away the restlessness of the past,


stepping out of the shadows to embrace pure contentment,


though a bit player,


in your life’s theatrical cast.




In your eyes,


i touch,

the flame of promise radiating through your loving light,


that is why,

i no longer dread,


the vacuum of encroaching night … … …




S M I L E





smile




let us walk,

knowing not the paths ahead,


let us talk,

knowing not each others tongues,


let us breathe,

the simple joys of life,

away from shredding strife,


so, take my hand,

in yours,


and let us walk and talk,


through many tears,

and an occasional smile,


as we walk on,

and on,


past our final mile…








Why, they ask her,



“why him?”.


She tells them that the day she met me,



that day when we laughed and when we spoke,

.

she felt, for the first time,
that all she needed to be,



was herself.




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