Life in Poetry reading, writing, reflecting

Life in Poetry reading, writing, reflecting
April showers bring May flowers

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

⌗IWSG, Wednesday 6th November 2019, î Abà

Welcome to a new monthly post for the Insecure Writers' Support Group.
If you would like to know more about this Blog-Hop or join-up start here

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Remember, the question is optional! 

November 6 question - What's the strangest thing you've ever googled in researching a story? 

The awesome co-hosts for the November 6 posting of the IWSG are Sadira Stone, Patricia Josephine, Lisa Buie-Collard, Erika Beebe, and C. Lee McKenzie!

î Abà

Writing a poem for the November issue of MAGMA, them Resistencia, I researched the Amazone tribe of the Guarani on Wikipedia. Beyond the historical aspects of their culture, I came across a link to a website detailing their language, as widely documented by the Jesuits priests in the 17th and 18th centuries. The site was in Spanish and I discovered a whole new world. 
This very intriguing language surprised me by the insightful light it shed on the Guarani, their culture and more fascinatingly on the way they perceived and interacted with their environment.
A lesson to all later civilisations, the Guarani, like most native people from the American continent live in harmony with Nature and have developed a deep respect for one another. I discovered an unfathomable richness of philosophy and art which gave me pause, which if it hadn't been recorded would have been lost, as their language perdured only orally until the 17th century.

my poem (not accepted for publication)
September 2019.
î Abá

Soy Guaraníe, î Abá.1
The white man appeared,
a tall spirit in a black robe,
a drape over his feet.

He glided into a clearing
silently from the roar
of the Iguazu waters. Hair
covered his cheeks and lip.

Tendyva, a beard. He spoke
a harsh tongue. The pale man
charmed our ears with the song
of a guyra2 we had never heard.

The sound came from a rigid
wooden Mboí3, he held in his hands.
We listened to his tales.
We believed his barter.

Our soul for protection.
We had heard of the raids.
Men in heavy shiny shells
thrust thick spears into tye4.

They took the strong. Juka5
the debíl6. The disappeared
never returned. The dead u7,
their bones and angue8

we offered to the ground.
The clanging battles
encroached more and more
on our hunting paths.

We knew we were next.
The black-robed men came.
We welcomed them
in our midst.


We gave them our chipa,
jeky, pakavo, pety9. We shared
the kali. They showed us
a wooden cross.

We felled more trees in a moon
than we would in twenty-four.
We missed their shade.
We missed the korochire10 tune.

The tatu, tapiti, mbosevi fled
deeper into the forest. We saw
no more panambi, pykasu11.
We built a great house.

It climbed to the sun
blaring down. The priest
chose a boy to clamber
the planks and tie

a gigantic gold cross
on the apex. They spoke words
from leaves bound in skin,
called a prayer, membo'e.

The drone drowned us in sleep.
When we woke, the words
were etched on the inside
of our minds. Our eyes blind.

With time the clash of metal
reached our ears. The din
and wails turned us deaf.
Sapukáy, Sapukáy12,Hasê.

The shiny-shell men
aimed sticks of fire,
sent a hail of arrows.
Flames rained.

The black-robed sorcerers
told us to chant the words
behind the cross statue.
We obeyed, temimbo'e13.


Many, many, many rains later,
our great-great-great grandsons,
deep, deep in the dark forest
looked up at the hovy14.

They heard a roar, saw
a giant shiny bird
with rigid wings.

They remembered
the legends

while gathered around
the hearth, weaved
with their hearts,

from elder to young.
Mother to daughter,
father to son.

They knew they
would come.
This time,

The Guaraní
would not be
wiped out.

They would fight.


1I am a Guarani, in Spanish and in Guaraní (
2A bird
6Weak in Spanish
9Bread, potatoes, banana, tobacco .... monkey.
10Zorzal cantor, type of bird.
11Armadillo, hare, tapir .... butterfly, dove
12Screams, to weep

MISSION, the film. Palme D'or, Cannes 1996, here

The Atlas, Morocco, October 2019

Bab Zouina, traditional Moroccan villa, Natha Yoga Retreat, October 2019

Thank you for visiting. Please feel free to comment, discuss and I will be sure to reply.
Happy IWSG Wednesday.
Torrential rains here in Toulouse, the past ten days. Halloween washout !