We ride another trough, wondering when the next crest is coming and how will it leave us in its wake: will we need to get back to the drawing table, rethinking about what we do next and how we do it? Or, will the new normal be here to stay. We have bravely faced the challenges, which were unfathomable even a few months back, and we are learning all the time, banked by hope and buffeted by an affirmation of love – within relationships and within communities. This simple message of hope and love is powerful – there are hard times, some have been tackling it, others wonder when it will come their way! Look around you and you will see – nature and how it constantly goes on renewing itself. Perhaps we have a duty to hang on, with hope; this too shall pass.
The politics of change has to happen, what we WANT has to happen NOW. I would not want to wait a lifetime, yet again. I think about the future generation/s and want them to enjoy freedom from discrimination, where they are recognised and appreciated for themselves. Anjali’s narrative (see the previous newsletter June ) rings in my ears – such an existential issue she raises! What answers do we have for her and our children, youth? Can we afford to sit quietly and wait? Poem and politics is something that is extremely difficult to bring together, however, I heard the poem by Maya Stokes who is a 2020 Orwell Youth Prize winner. Her poem responding to the theme, ‘The Future We Want’ was powerful, stringing together though words many of the milestone events from history and our recent past. In the words of one of the judges a “visceral poetry…full of grit and wit and substance”. I quote the opening lines:
Did you hear?
London is burning, and
not for the first time.
It appears that despite this city’s strange obsession
with umbrellas, its foundations are as flammable
as the first little pig’s house..
The full poem can be found here:
Dr Smita Tripathi