19 December 2016

What kind of love

They tell me love trumps hate...

... and I’d agree;
But Love I love, is not their kind of ‘love’.

What kind of love - please tell me now - is it,
That starving Haitian sweatshop workers feel
When they are taking pennies for their work?
What kind of love primly tells Africans
That they’ve too many children - so, ‘no aid’?

What kind of love was shown to Libya
When black Libyan bodies fell to lead
And then were cast unmarked into the earth
As NATO fuelled feuds at Tawergha?

What kind of love is shown still closer yet,
That throws mere words to parched, dirty Flint,
Who cups her hands for one mere thirsty gulp?
Yet wealth and treasure still cross oceans far,
To Syria with sanctimonious scorn
As this new era’s
mujahedeen maul
The innocent with USA-made guns?

What kind of love for Berta Cáceres?
Or for the Indians still near at hand
Who call upon the bones of those THEY love,
And pray they won’t be bulldozed overnight
As they defend their own ancestral lands
Against Mammon’s callous, uncaring spite?

What kind of love, with suff’ring faced, falls still?

Yet love still lingers, gracing places bleak
And broken, ‘mid the thunder and the shock,
And works invisibly, not blustering
Or boasting of itself. The quiet speak
In voices gone unheard in districts high.

But in them sounds a far-off trumpet note,
Both clear and high, if ears you have to hear.
It sounds no anthem, for no earthly pow’r,
But princes yet will to its music bow.

- 19 December 2016

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