brutal silence 13/10/2013

CASTLEMAINE VIGIL IN RECOGNITION OF ABORIGINAL SOVEREIGNTY AND IN SOLIDARITY WITH REFUGEES. 13th October 2013

I have not written much about the vigil these past weeks. I don’t know why except that perhaps the horror of what is happening, and hearing of new horrors every day, has taken my words.

When I read Pamela Curr’s letter dated 10th October 2013, which began: “Dear Friends, Yesterday a number of people- refugees and asylum seekers – were picked up and put back into detention. Because of the cone of silence surrounding all things DIBP (Dept Of Immigration and Border Protection) we do not have a precise explanation as to who is at risk of re-detention or what exactly could bring down this extreme penalty. Yesterdays victims were all different and naturally for privacy reasons the details are not available. Asylum seekers on bridging visas or community detention are at high risk but refugees awaiting finalisation of process are also at risk Please tell our friends and spread the word that adherence to the most minor and stringent of regulations is needed to avoid re-detention.…. “ (see my post 12/10/2013 for the rest of the letter) I felt unsurprised – as I have been expecting this – but at the same time horrified and desperate to protect those I could.

In the same week I read of how Scott Morrisson will not report self-harm or any other ‘incidents’ that affect people in detention and that added to the alarm.

And finally – that Morrison – in cahoots with the Sri lankan government (this buddy system remember was instigated, as far as I am aware, during Gillard’s time by Bob Carr) will support the attempts of ethnic cleansing directed against the Tamil people by returning any people from Sri Lanka  who attempt to find refuge in Australia.

Not only is this invader-australier government conducting it’s own ongoing attempts at genocide of the First Nations People of this continent (see recent posts)  but is also supporting other governments to do the same.

Horrific.

For me, I get to times when I have to close off all information, I need quiet so as not to become frozen, overwhelmed and ineffective. I have to find beauty in the world – in the birds, the hills, the trees, poetry, art, flowers, stories and others. I have to remember that there remains beauty and life amongst all this suffering and horror.

The quiet that nourishes me though is very different to that which Morrisson and the like enforce through their brutal silences / silencing.

Today I wrote this:

This Brutal Silence 1

I despair as you are disappeared
to some distant place-
I cannot know.

But someone does.
Someone knows this place
its stories, its loves and sorrows.

Silently I entrust you to their homeland
but as I do
all I hear
is the earth screaming.

This Brutal Silence 2

And now I am so disturbed that my brain may fly into a flurry of mutilated moss and murdered moons and this pen no longer write as my gut explodes with furious fear and these fragments become furnished with frozen immobility – befitting statuettes of a brutal silence.

This Brutal Silence 3

I sit watching the pardalotte watch me
its firey tail its blazing chest
and I am reminded
that the aim is to live
to listen
to notice the beauty and the grief
to commit myself to love-ing*
as if my own life depends on it.

*love-ing = to love courageously

I had a lovely surprise on Friday when Veronica came and sat the vigil with me. what an inspiring woman. Thank you Veronica. And a number of people stopped by – more than have in weeks.

and Thea sent me a message this morning to say she had spoken about the vigil at the Newstead Anglican church. good on you Thea. Wonderful.

castlemaine market building steps 5pm-6.30pm weeknights

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2 thoughts on “brutal silence 13/10/2013

  1. Thank you Janet for your words once again …. again they echo the feelings in the depths of my being. I know I feel the very deep seated need you write of “For me, I get to times when I have to close off all information, I need quiet so as not to become frozen, overwhelmed and ineffective. I have to find beauty in the world – in the birds, the hills, the trees, poetry, art, flowers, stories and others. I have to remember that there remains beauty and life amongst all this suffering and horror.” I know this is not the same as Morrison’s type of silence, that silence denies and indeed murders those who suffer. The silence you speak of, I think, stands in solidarity with the sufferer. I have to find it or else, like the sufferer, I am destroyed and then like the sufferer I am truly dead and of no more use. Thank you too for your poetry Janet … in the shelter of your words I find a home and a community, a place to be at home and to feel I am not so strange after all.

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