The Beggar


The Beggar is God’s friend

And when the beggar knocks
Beware:
The one who scoffs
at those in great despair
Will find God’s wrath
Descend upon their path
Wreaking great havoc
Where they once lay
In sleep
As if
In Peace.

For Peace is love and harmony
Kindness and generosity
Not merely in the things we see
But in our hearts
Our minds and
Our humanity.

Can sleep bring Peace
When rights are wronged?
Can Peace be real
When vice is strong?
Can good men sleep
When harm is done –
By their own acts or
Inaction?

Not all beggars appear in rags
Not all are destitute, filling bags
Wives too can beg
For love that’s lost,

For some sign that

They’re not just ghosts
Of past selves
Sold to servitude
Or trapped in timeless platitudes.
They beg for love that they have spent
With passion and servility.
They beg for compassion and dignity
For reinstatement
Of their humanity.

How God must rage at
The audacity
Of men who sleep
Through their calamity.

And still…
Wives pray for God’s Mercy
To reign over their Family.

Revealing the Mask:
I wrote this poem a while ago after visiting the Saartjie Baartman Center for Abused Women in Cape Town, South Africa. I had taken my students on a visit there after discussions on Saartjie Baartman’s story. Aside from gaining an insight into how women in general (and African women in particular) have been viewed historically, they were also keen to get a sense of the havens available to women in abusive relationships today.

It was a somber and moving visit. I went away pondering what the social worker had shared: The women sheltered at the center often had no other options for safety. Despite some coming from comfortable middle class families, most of the women’s  relatives were often detached from the reality of the abuse they faced. Perhaps this is connected to the stigma and perceived humiliation that women fear exposing themselves to by sharing fully the extent of their abuse. Perhaps it is symptomatic of the desensitized society we live in. It was also tragic to note how great a percentage of women sought the sanctuary of the center secretly when their husbands had fallen asleep or gone off to work, how very few would press charges and how many would call those same husbands to fetch them and briskly take them home.

I realise that this behaviour is tied up in the complex psychology of abuse victims, but can’t help believing that despite their own miserable circumstance, women’s inherent protective instinct over those they love is unshakable. I returned home frustrated and saddened  not only by the unchanging history, but by the present reality for far too many women begging to be safe and loved, and the complacency of our society on the matter.

 

Written for prompts from Three Word Wednesday and We Write Poems

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Synthesis


Together

Stronger than before

Each confident and certain of the bond that binds us

Needing everything and nothing from the other.

A unit

Distance does not alter the function we perform.

Dependent and independent

Relying on each other’s strengths,

Compensating for each other’s weakness.

Complete

Separate and inseparable

Looking forward to being together

without expectation,

Without anxiety

Nothing hidden.

Bringing everything we are

And loving everything we find

Partners.

Trusting

In the layered light of our love,

In the comfort of the worn path behind,

In our own capacity to move beyond the obstacles

Thankful:

To Him for favouring us with Faith

To each other for weathering the storms

that brought us here

To ourselves for striving for what’s possible

Satisfied:

Brimming with contentment for what is

Savouring the gift we have

Right Now

The only moment of Life

Unharnessed Power


Oh undisciplined mind of scattered thought,
broken threads and un-
hinged trains
rattling on directionless tracks
that outrace the past

and trace the unlived future

How to bypass your frenetic pace
Harness your unlimited potential
Access your silently dormant power?

Only
Through mastery of the Soul
Stilling
The hunger for what is not
Quieting
The thirst for more
Letting in
What is
with new Thankfulness
and unbounded Generosity
A mind of calm
At Peace
Free

Life Drama


How fond we are

of our  tragic tales-

trilogies or

life long melodrama.

Not in Reality

with what simply is

But trapped

in the swirling emotion

of our character.

Now the Villain

strikes again

with sharp remarks.

Wounded.

I desperately defend

my View : my Position

my Pride : my Identity.

I am at once

Warrior and Victim.

Unable to alter

the mechanics of my reaction

I live Bitter Pain-

my Speaking,

hostile rapid fire

or wailing complaint.

Unimaginable

no-

Unwilling to Be

Tranquil.

A mirror glimpsed.

Reflection?

Revelation:

I am the author

of this Saga.

My speaking

makes it so.

The world is

simply

what it is…

no should or shouldn’t be.

A perfect space

for Choice:

Anger or Love?

Hate or Harmony?