an Aotearoa poetry journal | ISSN 2744-3248

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Tarot #01

Rise Up

Like candlelight of protestors, the fires
cast from old homes upon the inlet’s dark water
are extinguished by eviction. Darkness
may consume them, they who are ghosts,
who are displaced from their homes, power
cut, emptied of belongings perhaps, but
these protestors are alight with oxygen
enough to flame protest, Rise Up! Rise Up!
Like a symphony on the theme of loss,
their voice carries across the land.
It is owl cry. It is moonlight. By night,
it is breath disturbing those who sleep.
Rise Up! Rise Up! Their chant swells again
with the tide. As homes are taken to resting
elsewhere, these protestors are left to watch
from windows dead without their fire.
Like electricity, the pulse of rejection burns
long in them. It is a fierce sun. It is the last song
of a dying bird. And they who are incandescent
with injustice, continue their cry. Rise Up! Rise Up!
For these protestors have nothing but embers,
yet they fight on with a burning need for home,
family and faith, if only to retain their voice.
Which is the most powerful thing of all.