Vibrant Welcome

PNG welcome1b OfirAsif

Photo: Ofir Asif

 

Welcome, guests, into

Our midst.

Join right in, you’ll

Get the gist.

We’ll dance you

Through our jungle greens,

‘Twixt crops in fields,

Across ravines.

We’ll sing and chant

And strike the ground,

With feet and poles

And hearts and sound.

Welcome, guests, into

Our midst.

Where mists among

The mountains

Roam,

And culture bursts

In vibrant

Song.

 

 

Dedicated to the amazing villages in Papua New Guinea, who came out in their young and old and in betweens, to dance heartwarming welcomes to my nephew and his friends who stayed as guests in their midst.

For Nancy Merrill’s Photo A Week Challenge: Colorful

 

 

First Summit

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Photo: Simon on Pixabay

 

He grew up in the shadow of Sagarmatha, where people’s moods shifted with Miyolangsangma’s and with the weather on the mountain foreigners insisted on calling “Everest.”

“Sagarmatha is her palace,” Dādā warned. “The uninvited should not trespass into the realm of the Goddess of Inexhaustible Giving. She turns many back. Some die.”

Most in the village agreed, and still they sent men to guide foreigners to the summit. Faith did not pay for necessities, while the visitors, eager if unequipped for the altitude and Miyolangsangma’s moods, paid well. Surely the Goddess understood.

“Foreigners are ignorant,” the old man argued. “But you know better than to show irreverence.”

He did know better. But Dādā needed medicine.

“I’ll stop by Rongbuk Monastery,” Garvesh proffered on the eve of his first ascent. “I will get the monks’ blessing.”

“It will not stop Karma,” his grandfather sighed. “Or what may be our last goodbye.”

∞ ∞ ∞

Trivia and Glossary:

  • Dādā — Grandfather in Nepali.
  • Sagarmatha — The Nepali name for Mount Everest. The Sherpa people believe that the mountain and its flanks are imbued with spiritual energy, and one should show reverence when passing through this sacred landscape, where the karmic effects of one’s actions are magnified.
  • Miyolangsangma — The “Goddess of Inexhaustible Giving” is a Tibetan Buddhist Goddess who Sherpa Buddhist Monks believe had lived at the top of the mountain.
  • Rongbuk Monastery — Also called the “sacred threshold to the mountain” is an important pilgrimage site for Sherpas who live on the slopes of Everest in the Khumbu region of Nepal.
  • Sherpa — One of the major ethnic groups native to the most mountainous regions of Nepal (as well as certain areas of China, Bhutan, India, and the Himalayas). The term sherpa or sherwa derives from the Sherpa language words Shar (“east”) and Wa (“people”), which refer to their geographical origin in Tibet.

 

For What Pegman Saw: Mount Everest, Nepal

 

 

Zēngzǔfù’s Bridge

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Photo: pngtree.com

 

He had made the pilgrimage as promised. He didn’t know if he believed the ancestors would know he’d kept his word, but life was complicated enough without angering spirits, ancestral or not.

And it would have made his mother happy to know he’d visited the bridge his great-great-great-great-grand (or however many generations it was) had helped build. She’d always longed to make the trip back herself, and couldn’t.

“The sweat of your ancestor dripped into the stones,” his mother had told him, “his blood and thus yours lives in them.”

He heard her voice in Jia’s when the child, sober in pigtails and pink frilly dress, studied the structure. “So this is where we came from?”

He nodded.

His daughter walked to the first pile and touched it reverently. “Zēngzǔfù built this one,” the six-year-old stated. “Nǎinai told me. She showed me in my dream last night.”

 

 

 

For What Pegman Saw: Jaingxi province of China

 

Harp’s Heart

off to work amitaiasif (2)

Photo: Amitai Asif

 

Off they go

With the harp

And the sounds

In their hearts.

Off they go

To work hard

And music’s soul

To impart.

 

 

For Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Music

 

 

Not Minor

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Photo: Adi Rozen-Zvi

 

You hold on in the mountains

Where the way of life you had fled

To protect

Has become

Tied into tourists arriving:

Some to gawk

Others to try and learn a bit about

Your rich traditions,

The pain and pride,

The dignity and patient ways,

The complicated significance

Of who you are

And may wish to remain

And how it is bound into the realities

Of avenues still open to you

In a country where you are

Curios and assets,

As well as precious human beings

Full of life and memories,

And to me rare less in your numbers

Than in the profound window

You open into the uniqueness of

Each one of us

And the minority we are or can be

At any time

To some.

 

 

For the Friday Foto Fun challenge: Minorities

 

 

Guarded

guarded NaamaYehuda

Photo: Na’ama Yehuda

 

Sentinels

Set in stone

Guard gates of

This temple zone.

Come to leave

You must pass

By these guards

From the past,

Who protect it

Perhaps

From time’s

Inevitable collapse.

 

 

For the Lens-Artists Challenge: Doors and doorways

 

All That Shines

Gilded AdiRozenZvi

Photo: Adi Rozen-Zvi

 

All that shines

In the glitter

Of candles lit,

Stories told,

Holds the breath

Spent in prayer

O’er Gods

Dressed in gold.

 

 

For the Photo a Week Challenge: Gilded

 

Stories We Tell

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Photo: Smadar Halperin-Epshtein

 

And the stories that we tell

To small ones under

Good tales’ spell

Become the fabric

That unveils

The yarns they’ll spin

Or might dispel.

 

For the SYW-Revisited Challenge

 

 

Pink Blessing

Pink Garland Thailand AdiRozenZvi (2)

Photo: Adi Rozen-Zvi

 

Perched above

Hearts and eyes

Freshly woven

Phuang malai

Made in faith

By the Thai

For good fortune

In Chiang Mai.

 

For Pink September Squares Challenge