Sunday, December 16, 2012

d'NA at 10

This year's d'NA (d'Nous Academy at Seminari Theoloji Malaysia) was the 10th since it started in 2003.

I found myself on familiar ground, once again. The playground where I spent most of my devotion/quiet time is more or less the same, except that a huge Bauhinia now towers over the monkey bars!

The Bauhinia wasn't there in the past.

Bauhinia flower.

It is a legume, and its seeds are carried in pods, just like peas.

Bee at work.

Fallen leaves.

* * *


We settle, we sedimentise,
Committing the stories of our everyday—
The pulse of our lives—
To the layered rock of history,
The neatly-pressed strata of yesterday.

Which is all well if our living years
Commence in museum halls,
If we never yearn to move beyond first gear
And hang ourselves in frames upon our walls.

We are taught that the nomad's way—
The pertanian pindah—is mundur,
That the way forward is to stop and stay
Put. To allow entropy to run its course
And achieve its lowest energy goals;
But followed to its end it is maximum disorder
And the disintegration of our souls.

Cold steel on warm skin
Where does the rushing river go?
Spirit restless within; stagnant, or pregnant,
Our blood will flow.
And not as blood in centrifuge,
Slowly spun and spinning, warmed—
For our refuge is the rushing storm,
The roaring sea;
Like bees on Bauhinia
Alighting on heart-shaped leaves,
We are itinerant (let it be so)
Tapak kuda, strewn upon the grass below,
Tapak unta, saddle up and go.

We embark in earth-coloured wedding dresses
Muddy and murky, as sordid as our sin-stained hearts,
Till He establishes our hearts blameless
In holiness presentable to stand upright;
Till the good work yields a hundredfold
We shall be as soil to seed, to nourish growth,
As candle flame, to flicker, to guide
Our stumbling feet through this brief night.

(Written on the monkey bars.)

* * *

Martin Luther, 2003.

SooT, Alissa, Tien, Ben, Isaac, Michael: since 2003.
Shern Ren, Kim Cheng, Grace: since 2004.

(Photo by Esmond.)

d'NA 2012: 10 years and counting!

(Photo by Sue Min.)

Now this (monkey bar photo) is a tradition. For everything else, "Michael is right." ;-)


crazyhorsechief said...

wow. thanks, Ben :)

Mel said...

Some things can never be replaced eh? But for everything else...

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