Tuesday, March 17, 2015

How long, Oh Lord?

How Long Oh Lord Of love?
“What shall we do with his two wives?”
His nephew asked of me.
“They can’t go home to South Sudan,
That simply cannot be.
Their homes were burned down to the ground
The area decimated.
Their crops destroyed, their village razed
Their graveyards desecrated.
But if his children are not schooled
What will their future hold?
Without their father who will be
The one to form their mould?”

The husband, father, brother, son
Was wounded in the chest,
The bullet lodged just inches from
The heart within his breast.
But worrying to all around
Was his paralysis
What was the cause he could not feel?
What did the doctors miss?
The surgeons would not operate…
They would not take the risk.
But why he died they could not say -
His passing far too brisk.

The family members rallied round
His children and his wives.
They promised to take care of them
To give what money buys.
But without home and without land
They drift as ships at sea.
They have no permanence at all
No place where they can be
A part of all that went before
To generations back
Uprooted p’rhaps indefinitely
To live between the cracks.

Power hungry oligarchs
Refuse to broker peace
While lives are shattered, broken, torn
Where tear flow will not cease.
Where is the world community?
Where is their hue and cry?
How can we sit and wait and wait
All idly standing by.
It only takes the silent just
To let the wicked thrive…
We who know better need to speak
If these are to survive.

But voices lifted up from earth
Are heard by One above
Their blood cries out, their tears are seen
How long O Lord of love?
How many graves will still be dug
How many widows mourn?
How many children live their lives
As orphans so forlorn?
How many people still displaced
How many homes destroyed?
Rise up, Defender of the weak!
Your goodly plans deploy.

Johann W van der Bijl © 2015-03-08

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