I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

24 February 2014

Lighting the Dark

They are gathering with candles
all over the country tonight
in vigil for the young man killed
in the prison we call 
a Detention Centre.

This one was murdered, others
have killed themselves —
Asylum Seekers
who find no asylum here
except the lunatic kind.

In this little town, there's no
mass gathering, but I post
a virtual candle for Reza,
killed in my name
but not with my consent.

It's midnight. 
I've come to this vigil late.
Still I add my protest.
The night
isn't over yet.

See news report

Submitted for Poets United's Poetry Pantry #190


  1. I so wonder of those that don't make it.. here in Europe the name of Lampedusa is forever tainted... done to in my name, a European...

    1. Thanks Bjorn. I Googled Lampedusa, and I see what you mean. We have a very bad record here in Australia, Government sanctioned and even Government initiated! It recently culminated in a brutal murder. I have now posted a link.

  2. i dont know much abt the topic u r talking.but surely feel the anger and protest in ur narration.very well put though. dxbnidblog

  3. i am proud that they are crying out for change. it is tragic. i hate to think how many seeking to come to our country gave their life...thanks for the awareness and using your voice rosemary

  4. I read the article that you linked to, Rosemary, to understand what your poem is about. Your poem really is a virtual candle to the slain young man. Tragic that he died in prison seeking asylum.

  5. How sad that this young man died in the very country he considered a haven!

    1. Even worse, Gabriella — he never reached Australia. Asylum seekers are now processed offshore, in what seem to be terrible conditions, and will never be resettled in Australia. This is in an effort to stop them from coming. It seems to be working, but meanwhile people are badly teated and suffering.

  6. Thank you for speaking out, Rosemary, and for lighting that candle in your readers' hearts. I am glad people are protesting. May all voices effect change.

  7. Your title says it all. Not many are aware of the plight of these people. Who wants to flee their own country, risking hell and high water, unless for compelling reasons? It seems most governments now are wary of granting asylum to refugees. Whatever the reason, xenophobic or political, we may not know. :(

    1. Yes, that's so. :(

      My title is taken from the name given to the event. All the vigils last Sunday night were given the overall name/slogan: Light the Dark.

  8. Thank you all for your comments and understanding. This tragic case is the tip of the iceberg.

  9. Wonderful poem--agh. Thanks. k.