Thursday, October 31, 2013

For Layne

For Layne     

Taka, taka Doom, taka Doom!
The woman of ancient times throws her head back,
transported by her drum.
Doom taka Doom!
“Rhythm shapes matter,” the scientists say.
Priestesses already knew!
Cybele holds her drum and smiles.
Play, Layne, Play!
Create the world anew each day!
The drummer women of old
never relinquished their power
to the conquering barbaric hoards,
power amassed as millennia of music.
Play on, Layne, play on!
Doom taka Doom, taka Doom!
Watch us now, and leave us, Layne,
with this one great legacy,
the ritual rhythm of the drum.
As the Goddesses of old revive and renew,
so do you, so do you!

Annelinde Metzner

October 31, 2013

Layne Redmond (1952 to 2013) was a great teacher of the frame drum, and author of “When the Drummers Were Women, A Spiritual History of Rhythm.”   She passed through the veil this week in Asheville, North Carolina.

Layne Redmond with her tambourine

Layne with frame drum

Friday, October 25, 2013

The End of the Year

The End of the Year                                         

It is coming on evening in late October.
Quickly, quickly the sky darkens, the sun sets.
A fresh layer of pine straw pungently awakens the senses.
The unweaving, the ending, the beautiful death.
October gives us with her beauty
     a soft, kind letting-go, a cradling.
Evening, birds grow softer and softer,
     insects shortening their calls for one final song.
I too am held in Her arms, waiting;
allowing, releasing, loving life ever more acutely
     at this, the end of the year.

Annelinde Metzner
October 21, 2012

1. “Like” BUTTON for “Annelinde’s World” :

Friday, October 18, 2013

Tell a Woman

Tell a woman

Tell a woman that, deep inside,
deep in her heart, where no one can see,
she holds the flame that lights the world.
Tell a woman that no one can ever extinguish that flame.
Not anyone, be he bigger than her, stronger than her, faster than her,
angrier than her, drunker than her, more convinced he is right.
This flame is our secret, all women’s. We are born with it.
With this flame, within our hearts, we work two jobs while raising three kids.
And we give them piano lessons.
With this flame, we cross oceans
so our children can grow up strong without stigma.
With this flame, we nurse our elders, and our young ones too,
often at the same time, keeping an eye on bill payments,
scrounging for food and rent.
Tell a woman she has a huge bright flame ready to flare up in her heart,
and she’s not alone. We all have one,
we who walk tall, and we who are under the thumb,
we who speak here now, and we who have been silenced,
we all share this flame, it’s an eternal flame,
it’s hot, and it’s brilliant, and it never goes away.
Tell a woman, this is our birthright, this is who we are,
we, the women, the people of the womb,
who carry the world, who yearn for love and honor,
who, somewhere deep inside, will never be denied, will never give in.
Tell a woman, this is who we are, all of us aflame, all of us women,
all of us carrying that precious fire
that guides our days, that reminds us of what this life really means,
that shows us its light and tells us how to move,
how to be, how to turn, how to love each day.
Tell a woman, she has a pure flame deep in her heart
that can never be extinguished, that cannot be pushed under,
that can never be broken, that does not bleed away,
that cannot be raped or beaten down,
that can only rise higher, that flares up within us,
and with each step brightens, and lights our way,
brighter and brighter, as we see our flames
more clearly, more loudly, more assuredly, more proudly,
all of us gazing at that brand new day,
not much longer now, just on the horizon,
when we look at a woman and know,
with her light, she leads the way.

Annelinde Metzner
February 14, 2013

On November 16, 2013, I will be giving a reading of my poetry along with my partner, the fabulous poet Susa Silvermarie, at the UUCSV in Black Mountain, NC at 7 PM.  The occasion is the launch of the datebook We'Moon 2014, in which we both have poems.   The title of the evening is "Tell a Woman" after the poem above which I wrote for One Billion Rising Asheville on February 14, 2013.  The evening will also feature a number of my Goddess songs from my songbook, "Lady of Ten Thousand Names," performed by Sahara Peace Choir.

One Billion Rising in India

One Billion Rising in Indonesia

Saturday, October 12, 2013

A Prize for Malala

Malala Yousafzai from her book, "I Am Malala"

A Prize for Malala                                    

“In the name of God, the most beneficent, the most merciful...”

          Malala Yousafzai in her birthday address to the UN Youth Assembly, July 9, 2013

A pink lacy shawl frames her dark hair and determined face.   She is sixteen!

Confident and convivial, she commands the podium in front of the world’s leaders.

Sixteen!   Malala has survived a gunshot at close range,

on her schoolbus in Pakistan,

a target of the Taliban for speaking her strong mind.

She has survived!

“Respected elders, and my dear brothers and sisters,  Salaam Aleichem.”

She fingers her delicate shawl, bequeathed from Benazir Bhutto,

one woman to another, a gift of strength from across time and beyond the veil.

“This time, we women will do it for ourselves.

Thank you to God, for whom we are all equal!

I speak so that those without voice can be heard.”

Her mother wipes away tears.

Men in suits stare, making space in their consciousness for Malala,

for this empowered young woman who speaks truth and fears no one.

“I want education for your children as well.”

        Malala’s message to the Taliban who shot her (interview with Jon Stewart)

Be ready, you big mean old world.

Malala is sixteen, and she is ready for you.

The prize goes to Malala for clarity, for courage,

for shimmering through the flood of lies

with the clear power of truth.

Annelinde Metzner

Listen to and watch the entire interview with Malala Yousafzai on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, given on October 10, 2013.  

Read more about Malala and the Malala Fund for education.

Candles for Malala in Pakistan

Pakistani girl with photo of Malala

Friday, October 4, 2013

The red braids

The red braids     

“I got mad and cut them off!” says my Tante,
          of her long, red braids, when she was twelve.
“I wanted a bob.”
I beg them of her,
          the two wrapped in paper in a drawer.
I catch my breath as she unfolds them,
          for the girl is there, in the hair.
A deep earthy russet splashed with gold.
Impetuous, full of laughter, scary with power,
          she laughs at me from across the decades.
Had her sister braided them that day?  They are uneven,
          one tight and small, the other open and loose,
          done on a day, 1924, when there was too much to do,
          too big a world
          to bother with these golden treasures
          that hung carelessly forgotten down her back, 

          color of amber,
          as though her brilliance, her thought shone
          through their luster.
“I always feel sixteen,” says my Tante,
and she is there then, and here today.

Annelinde Metzner

August 5, 2004

      I have written much about my aunt Elsie, who with great wisdom and foresight, introduced me to poetry at a very young age.  And here she is today, having turned one hundred years old on September 25, 2013!  Her memory is vivid and she is still totally involved in life.
     Born in Germany and immigrating to the US in 1923, she to this day has a large repertoire of poems and songs in English and German which she recites from memory.
     Thank you for all you have given us, dear Tante Elsie!

Elsie at her 100th Birthday

Listen to Annelinde reading "The red braids" from my CD and DVD, "The Abundance of Mary," available by clicking at the top of this page on the "BUY" tab.