So

Stephen Chinnock

7 June 2020

Our neighbourhood
Has been on screen
Ever so briefly
Showing our distress
In the midst of Armageddon

Nothing can represent
in a news flash
what people went through
the fear and fright
of actually being there
seeing flames leap
fifty metres into a dark sky
chocked by smoke
clinging to the shores of the lake

Some even tried to drive cars
into the lake, to escape the immense heat
imagine the adrenaline pumping
through their hearts
imagine the images burnt into their mind
hard hard moments
to let go
even months or even years
down the inevitable ticking of time

The news flash
can never show
where our hearts are now
the connections we’ve made
with each other

They can’t show the Phoenix
arising in that community
the amazing creativity found
by many for the first time

The way we’ve held hands
metaphorically in the time of the virus
the way we’ve shared
and drawn in many
to write it down
creating a history
in spoken words from the heart

Those lest expected
have come forward
and created a mosaic
of lives then and now

It’s been done
through a variety of arts
reflecting our reality now
a resurrection out of the ashes

Thank you all
creative souls
We are weaving a blanket
Of protection
For the next time!