Thursday, 25 December 2014

On bended knee

It’s Christmas morning and all is quiet in the house, time to raid Dad’s drinks cupboard ;) and pause for a thought. A thought that has been trying to get through to me for a few days now but has been fighting through hefty bunches of tinsel, mince pies and general excitement.

The thought, the image, is this … that 5 months ago I was on bended knee before a star in Bethlehem, with tears running down my cheeks.

I was in the midst of my Palestinian adventure and wrestling with the strange sensation that the thing I liked least about the ‘Holy Land’ was its religion. I was running from the worlds of ideology and theology from God and gods, from all that could give voice to violence, justify oppression, crown injustice.

Then I felt it, thick in the air of Bethlehem, like the presence of something beautiful and mysterious that catches your breath and softens the soul. I can’t really name it, which I guess is the meaning of ‘Holy’.

 I knelt at the star in that small tunnel under the church of the Nativity and then I heard it, the small voice that slips under the noise, simply saying ‘Hope comes to the humble’. I was relieved, I had ran into my God, where I always have and always will find him. He wasn’t playing power games or counting money or waging war. He was underground, in the small and hidden things, with the weak and broken hearts, in a gentle knocking, in a faint whisper. Giving strength, giving hope.

There are no words to argue with that Presence when it comes near. Just tears that rise from the deep.

So, if we bend the knee this Christmas let’s not do it out of pious religion or even reverent fear, but because we need to get smaller in order to see the small things, in order to appreciate the ignored, to listen to our children, to value our sacredness, to touch the Christ child and in all this to know God.

‘You will find him wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger’

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Beers on the border

I was loving Lebanon today
Well I was loving it from a distance anyway
Sat on the beach sun melting in sky
I could see your borders with the squint of an eye
On that beach with a beer and the sand on my skin
I felt new adventures about to begin
But the car broke down along the road
And the people inside were an unwelcome load
The night closed in
And all we could see
Were the lights of the boat
That guarded your sea
Now it’s a curious thing
When a Samaritan gets stuck
Hoping for good will
For providence or luck
And providence it came
In an enemy
Who offered to tow us from A to B
With a jilting and stumbling and hesitant trust
The pull of the rope got the better of us
And the better of us was seen that day                                     View of coast from Lebanese border
In a handshake between brothers
Who had lost their way.



Beers with military boat in background patrolling the Lebanese border


Cerveza y frontera

Yo era fan de Líbano hoy
Bueno, fan desde la distancia más bien
Sentada  en la playa,  sol derritiéndose en el cielo
Pude ver tus fronteras con el estrabismo de un ojo
En esa playa con una cerveza y la arena en mi piel
Podía sentir una nueva aventura
Pero el coche se averió en el camino
Y la gente dentro era una carga no deseada
La noche acercando
Y todo lo que pudimos ver
Fueron las luces del barco
Que vigilaba tu mar
Es una cosa curiosa
Cuando un samaritano se atasca
En espera a buena voluntad
A la providencia o la suerte
Y la providencia vino
En un enemigo
Que ofreció un remolque de A a B
Con un miedo y tropiezo y confianza vacilante
El tirón de la cuerda nos sacó lo mejor
Y vi lo mejor en nosotros ese día
En un apretón de manos entre hermanos

Quiénes se habían perdido.

Bethlehem Princess


Bethlehem princess walks the walls
Hair loose in the wind
Wind that knows no politic
Comes and goes as it chooses
Not like her
The Bethlehem Princess of the Grand Hotel

Bethlehem beauty
Wears dignity and strength
Takes phone calls from a war she cannot prevent.
Ten floors high
From her room she can see
The lands that gave her identity

I.D. I.D. I’d like to see
But there’s no paper she can show him
To set her free
Her education can get her a flight out of here
But she chooses to stay with her people instead
The Bethlehem Princess
Crown of thorns on her head.



Thursday, 16 October 2014

Diving

In between wall
And crystal sea
The diver suspended
In liberty
A jump
A leap
Of faith
If you like
Cold water
To catch you
And cleanse you
It might
From there the sound
Of the birds of the air
No chatter, no worry
No striving or care
The bustle of people
Gets drowned in the swim
Anticipation
Of when
The
Next
Dive
Will                                                                             
Begin                                                                                      Diver jumping from Acre City walls




Acre city sea panorama

Saltos

Entre la muralla
Y el mar de cristal
El salto suspendido
En la libertad
Un salto
Un paso
De fe
Si te gusta
Agua fría
Te coge
Y te limpia
Quizás
Desde allí solo suena
Las aves del aire
Sin cháchara preocupada
Sin esfuerzos ni cargas
El jaleo de la calle
Hunde al nadar
Anticipación
De cuando
El
Próximo
Salto
Empezará

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Ichrit against the world


The nations gathered on the mount that day
A game of football
A chance to play

Ichrit against the world let’s say.

The goal was clear but the players few
The last men standing
Against the blue

He shoots, he scores
But the opposition is strong
Like every time that he builds
And it doesn’t last long

After the match a cup of chai
With drone overhead
In watchful sky
Then there were dances and donkeys and laughs
Conversations on couches from worlds apart.

The stones in the valley added their cry
Like dull tones of creature not ready to die.

Let’s play once again
For the camaraderie
For friendship that reminds us
Of you and me
When winning and losing blur into one
And the score board is lost in the light of the sun

Ichrit your time has just begun















Ichrit contra el mundo

Las naciones se reunieron en el monte ese día
Un juego de fútbol
Una oportunidad para jugar

Ichrit contra el mundo digamos.

El objetivo era claro, pero los jugadores pocos
Los últimos hombres de pie
Contra el azul

Tira y marca
Pero la oposición es fuerte
Como cada vez que se construye
Y no dura mucho tiempo

Después de la lucha, una taza de chai
Con drones por encima
En el cielo vigilante
Luego hubo danzas y burros y risas
Conversaciones en sofás de mundos aparte.

Las piedras en el valle añaden su clamor
Como gemidos de una criatura no lista de morir.

¿Jugamos otra vez más?
Para la camaradería
Por la amistad que nos recuerda
De ti y de mí
Cuando el ganar y perder se desenfoque en uno
Y el marcador se pierde en la luz del sol

Ichrit su tiempo acaba de empezar

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Rooftops


“From this roof top we watched the bombs”
I heard him say
Like the fireworks that come on happier days
This roof under which
The children were born
Where deaths and marriages and secrets were sworn
“Today I’m just waiting for the sun to rise,
For a subtle change in the tone of the skies”
So we sit there amongst pipes and stereos and friends
And the talk goes on until the darkness ends
Coal embers still burning, a slow dawn is turning
But the chill of the morning catches my breath
I see the sea through bleary eyes
Shapes are forming 
But it’s not daytime yet.







Tejados

"Desde este tejado vimos las bombas"
Le oí decir
Al igual que los fuegos artificiales que vienen en los días más felices
Este tejado, donde abajo
Habían nacido los niños
Dónde fueron juramentados defunciones y matrimonios y secretos
"Hoy solo estoy a la espera de que salga el sol,
Para un cambio sutil en el tono de los cielos"
Así que nos sentamos allí entre pipas y equipos de música y amigos

Y la charla que continúa hasta que la oscuridad termina
Brasas de carbón sigue ardiendo, un amanecer lento se está convirtiendo
Pero el frío de la mañana me llama la respiración
Veo el mar a través de los ojos legañosos
Formas estan aclarando
Pero de dia no estamos
Aun

    View from the roof top at sun rise, Kafr Yasif


Monday, 13 October 2014

A White Hole

A white hole
To puncture sky
An angel's hope
A young man’s life

Tough city
Puts the heart on trial
Waiting on a miracle
The white hole’s smile

Words start spilling
Like baby milk cries
Sustenance benevolence
The reasons why

Something is coming
Through the cracks in the wall
Is it weak enough to save us,
Strong enough to fall?

Do we catch the gift?
Do we throw it back?
Do we welcome the light
Or return to black?

 Church of the Anunciation Nazareth























Un agujero blanco

 Un agujero blanco 
Un pinchazo del cielo 
Una esperanza angélica
Una vida juvenil


Ciudad dura 
Pon el corazón al juicio 
Esperando un milagro 
La sonrisa del agujero blanco 

Palabras comienzan a derramar
Como los gritos lecheros de bebé
Benevolencia, Sustento
Las razones por que      
                                                     
Algo viene
Por las grietas en la pared
¿Es débil como para salvarnos,
Fuerte para caer? 


¿Agarramos el regalo? 
¿Lo tiramos al suelo? 
¿Acogemos la luz 
O volvemos al negro?