Inside out

Some poems and reflections on life


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A post-modern psalm

Smoke cloud dims my view in front
I see you walking in the distance

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

Water swirls deepening red
Our pursuers cry out from the deep

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

Shouts of agony rend the air
You wrap your arms around me

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

A promise of hope is given
A land we cannot enter … yet

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

We raise up our greedy wealth
Melted into a golden beast

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

We build walls to keep ourselves intact
And slaughter the enemy before us

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

Our life is on borrowed time
We eat tomorrow’s bread today

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

We are not satisfied
We strive to be divine and end up less than human

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

Where do we look for hope?
Where do we look for life?
Where do we look for tomorrow?

Seven billion angels dance on a pinhead

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It takes one

Sitting on the porch
In the evening sun
First day back in Hong Kong

Discussing news with Father Murray
On the hill overlooking the New City
At the house of St Francis
Up the road from Tao Fung Shan

“tell me” he asks “how did it start?”
“it started” I say “with one”
“one kitchen, one hall, one church, one school”

“gradually it grew
“the ones joined
“they joined up and linked
“we started to see suburbs and then towns
then a few cities and regions”

“eventually more than half the country

“it was only a matter of time
“before the government had to say “no”

“but it started with “one”

“one kitchen – no nuclear weapons in my kitchen
“thank you very much

“I know that sounds strange and futile
“but if enough people say it and
“say it together
“things happen
“and they did

“That is how NZ became nuclear free.”

And thinking back now,
As I fly over Hong Kong again
Maybe, just maybe, that is why
We don’t live in a
Nuclear winter.

What one will you change in your kitchen today?