Saturday Night Baby

Tonight we dance.

With Electrified bodies

With minds floating far from concerns,

 

Tonight we riot.

All leather skirts and red lips to the ready

We use our fashion to scream at convention

At the uniform

At the mundane business of the working.

 

For tonight is Saturday

Every hour of this night is our own.

So let us lavish in laughter, in dancing and gin

As we brace ourselves for the week to begin.

For If My Body Was A Temple

For if my body was a temple

It would be a shelter for the homeless

A second chance for sinners

A gateway to God

Through the love that radiates in us all

 

There would be no pretence here

No “holier than thou”

No role playing

No mask wearing

Just a group of God-fearing sinners

Trying to make their way Home.

 

There would be no saints,

For I am not one

For the good that I desire

I do not do,

But the evil that I do not want

This I practise

 

And it is in this temple

That only this kind of biblical vulnerability will reside.

Where there is no shame

For the reality of our human experience.

For all the ways we sin and fall short

Of God’s glory

Time and time again.

 

My temple would be

An abundance of loving arms

Mirroring that of the father of the prodigal son

Welcoming all home

Like estranged family

Ready to start anew

 

Oh, how eagerly God welcomes us home

Oh, how he yearns for us

How he pines and bleeds for us

 

But alas, my body is not a temple

This temporal cage does not deserve such recognition

My body is more like a prison of flesh

That my soul battles in

Constantly battling against my own human nature

Drifting me further and further away from the divine

 

May the Lord help marry my nature to my nurture

Help to bring peace to these two duelling entities

My innate sinful inclination

Versus

My holy burning aspiration

Only in you, Lord, will I find

Harmony and wholeness in this fatal human condition

 

For this I know:

Your Grace is sufficient,

Your Love is enough.

For Grenfell Tower Block

I am the tower

I am home

I am family

I am security

I am where safety should be

I am where you can let your guard down

Until…

 

Friction.

Two opposing forces cause a spark

Left in me because too many believe me to be

An eye sore,

The reason you clutch your purse tighter,

A reminder of the unattractive reality of poverty,

When you would much rather

Be left behind the veil of ignorance

Wealth gifts you.

 

So they give me a ten million pound paint job

To cover the cracks of financial inequality

Without actually dealing with the problem

– This becomes the fuel

To the fire left in me by the scornful eyes of the rich

By the powerful

Who measure worth by bank balances

They are the fuel to the fire that grows in me in the quiet, unsuspecting cover of night.

 

But, unfortunately, in this case

The fire is not a metaphor for love

The fire is not a metaphor for passion, for intensity, for purpose, for pleasure.

The fire is a fire

The fire is death

The fire is pain

The fire is destruction

The fire is neglect

The fire is the government, the biggest furnace of corruption

The fire is a life destroying entity

The fire is trauma

The fire is hate

The fire is what happens when we neglect social wounds; such as classism, racism and inequality

For so long

They begin to fester and persist.

 

For I am no more

No more am I the myriad of lives, loved ones, hopes and dreams that inhabited me.

I am now a derelict shadow

That will not be not be ignored, society.

 

Society is the ashes, in which the

Phoenix will rise.

Moments

 

It was in those moments

The smallest

Most telling

Moments

That I was most sure of you

 

The moment our chests deflate

After fits of laughter

Sitting cross-legged

On the common room floor

 

The moment we all collapse home

From collective exhaustion

From the splendour and awe

The night gifted us

 

The moment our quartet sings in unexpected unison

To songs we never knew we could recite

The moment the most mundane tasks

Together are filled with bursts of delight

 

The moment when you feel

Shockingly vulnerable

And yet fundamentally safe

It is in that sweet paradox

 

It is in those moments

The smallest

Most telling

Moments

That I am most sure of us

 

This is a home.

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