World Poetry Day: ‘What Can We at Home Do?’

As it’s World Poetry Day, I wanted to share a piece I wrote recently, called ‘ What Can We at Home Do?’. It’s somewhat of a reflection on being self-employed, but more generally a reflection on a detachment from the outside world. A detachment which can be especially tricky during tumultuous times.

I want to point out that this piece was originally titled “What Can a Man at Home Do?”. That’s because it was borne of thinking on my own situation as a freelancer. The original title offers a nice rhyme too, but I wanted this piece to be universal.

However, I didn’t want there to be even the hint of a ‘modern male experience’ theme in this poem. Not because I’m not interested in it, but because that would be a complete distortion on my original “this is a situation I’m in, let me write about it” thinking. So, ‘What Can We at Home Do’ seems far more appropriate, accessible and welcoming.

Anyway…hope you like it!

What can we at home do?
Sitting still and watching dust accrue.
Seeing tyrants and populists rashly un-do.
Tell me, what can we at home do?

ONE
“Read”. Okwonga, Tempest and Akala said.
Drill deep, absorb, recover your head.
“Shakespeare, Becket, Blake, Sophocles”.
Or others if fancies fly from these.

TWO
Take time and space, reflect make notes.
Channel the dreams you (younger) wrote.
Knowing who we are at home
will hearten us as we come to roam.

THREE
Observe the new. Be it windowed gardens, tweeting birds,
allow fresh thoughts to grow, let them be heard.
Give earlier dreams a chance to breathe,
mix generous new thoughts, blend, then seed.

FOUR
Think kind. And through compassionate thoughts
you will gain focus for fights worth salt.
Was never a human who…oh, I don’t know,
But kindness is the way to go.

FIVE
Finally, connect and listen.
You’ve one, and others unique positions.
But speak and hear, let’s chat, be human.
A distraction (Crusoe’s Wilson) isn’t a crewman.

 

So that’s what we  at home can do.
Sitting still, before dusting through
a sight of tyrants and populists undoing.
Let’s fix, re-do, prepare to get gluing.

 

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