Monday, 9 May 2016
A Life in the Day of a Foot Soldier Called Freedom
Across the modern world, freedoms are being whittled away by the very socio-cultural-religious and political forces that purport to support and endorse them; freedom of speech (cannot even agree to differ without causing offence in some quarters); freedom to assume whatever sexual identity we feel appropriate (as if gay or transgender folks have a choice…); freedom to protest, put our names to a legitimate petition or such documentation as may be considered ‘indiscreet’ by Intelligence sources (ask Julian Assange …) etc. etc. etc.
In places like Saudi Arabia, young people risk crucifixion, for protesting against a vile regime which many western politicians and other leading figures like to cosy up to if only for its wealth and oil.
Whoever and wherever we are, we should never take what freedom we have for granted, but neither should we assume it is the last word in what freedom means; those freedoms we don’t have or any that are at risk will always be worth fighting for as and when required.
Have two terrible world wars taught so much of humankind so little about freedom?
A LIFE IN THE DAY OF A FOOT SOLDIER CALLED FREEDOM
Heart heavy, foot-weary,
for trudging life’s highways, byways
and country lanes
Maybe arrive by nightfall
or needs must press on till daybreak,
Under orders from a skylark
last seen soaring into a weepy dawn
(looking for Heaven?)
Apollo offers hope in time
to lighten the heartbeat, put a spring
in the loneliest step
discarded on the slopes of Parnassus
recovered, read aloud
Where life no less precious
on highways, byways or country lanes,
find bitter-sweet poems
Foot soldier, resting at last
among earth worms burrowing histories
of love, peace, and war
Only Apollo visits the grave,
in remembrance of Freedom’s poems
and those who listened
Yet, the foot soldier lives on
in (open) minds and hearts of free spirits
across the world
Copyright R. N. Taber 2016