Friday, January 2, 2009

Definitive moments

I have had several moments in my life that I place in my definitive category. Some I will never find words to express. Some are so deeply entwined in my core that to remove them, analyze them, and reveal them would strip them of their power.

But some of them only have power when stripped open. Some moments yearn to be shared. These have no shame. Like the beggar at the traffic light, they cry out to me. Sobs of fear, regret and desperation are met only by my own heartache and incompetence.

I had another dream about her. Her name was Sali and I first wrote about her here. Lately, she has been invading my subconscious, crying out to be shared.

I met her July of 2008 in a small village in Mozambique called Panhame. Her lifestyle is what you see on National Geographic with little comfort and even less guarantee of tomorrow.

Yet, she aroused no pity from me.

Sympathy, sure. "Man, somebody's gotta do something" sure. Pity? No.

This does not mean that I am immune to the sadness of seeing impoverished people. I felt no pity because she felt no pity.

This was her life. She is 4 or 5 years old and herded her family's goats. She helped her mother with the only meal of the day. She would probably never get an education or learn where babies come from before she was married. This was her life and, at her age, she seemed to accept her life in all its entirety.

I am no photographer but here she is:

And these are my words:

To the girl who aided my heart recovery:


The great expanse of dust packed still
By bare feet trampling
The shadows pool beneath Marula tree
And dusty rocks, undisturbed, watch

Sali toddle across the plain
Heavy laden, haunting eyes
And the beads and bracelets clanking

And she tumbles
Embracing shrouds
The dust- scarlet and steaming

Tear neglected she leapt
To chase the goat
And fade into the blackness.


ScoMan said...

Wow, that is a great blog and a touching poem.

AngiDe- Nana's Box said...

Wow, what a beautiful little girl and what touching words.

"Nana's Box"

Ron said...

I can definatly relate to what your feeling. Having been to Africa and many developing countries, you really begin to see what happiness is all about--for they are the one's who show it best.

Great blog!


Alexis said...

Very touching blog. Hi from SITS.

Hillbilly Duhn said...

Wow...That was very touching.
I guess, in the way in which you put it, feeling pity for someone who does not feel it for themselves would be almost rude. For lack of better words. She found the happiness in what little life gave her, and truly, isn't that what we all should find? Be happy with what we have, a lot of people could take a heart felt lesson for sure...

I loved this one!! Great Job!

B said...

touching. Thanks for sharing something so amazing with us.

Grand Pooba said...

Very touching! Thanks for that!

Stesha said...

LOve your blog and the post was fantastic!

Auds at Barking Mad said...

How beautiful and touching. Such an empathetic soul.

Linked in from SITS and wanted to say hello. Am so glad I stopped by!

Random Hiccups said...

To all who have posted before I could write each person individually:

Wow. Thanks to each and everyone of you for reading about her and feeling, if just for a moment, what I felt. Thank you for engraving her on your spirit even if just for the 5 minutes it took to read the post. And thank you for your encouragement. Without ya'll I would just be another closet writer.


Lo said...

Lovely. Pictures from words. Visiting from SITS

American in Norway said...

What an awesome poem & love the picture... what a doll...
Popping by via SITS... love you blog!