At the beginning of Poetry Warfare month, a new and lovely friend with one of the strongest social consciences I’ve ever known, suggested I do a Poetry Welfare month for May. I connected with it faster than a New York minute because I’ve been wanting to reach out to my community on a grass-roots level, which is exactly what I did tonight. But more on that later.
Like all cities, Brisbane can be a lonely place, especially when you’re faced with financial and personal hardship and especially at night. In the dead of winter. West End and its surrounds is renowned for its hostels and care facilities to help the ‘have nots’. There are those who can give a little, and there are those who can give a lot. I can give a lot – I’m time rich, I connect with people who all walk different and often divergent paths and I have a passion for helping people. I’m interested in the nature and dynamics of community and yesterday I met up with Dave Andrews – a community man who just happens to look very much like Professor Dumbledore 🙂
I could espouse Dave’s work, but please click on this link to read about his inspiring and saint like work – http://www.daveandrews.com.au/bios.html#bio4.
So how did I come to meet Dave? I was writing poetry at Blackstar a few months back and I noticed that he was sitting and talking to a group of around fifteen people. Some were volunteers and others were there for a chat and a cuppa. I contacted Dave, met him yesterday and tonight I went to a gathering under the stars where people brought what seemed like a tonne of food to feed the people who not only need food in their bellies, but food for their souls in the form of human contact.
I met people who have been displaced and I hope I can give some loving kindness and compassion back to the people who need it most.
And so it’s Poetry Welfare month, which started off with a poetry ‘write in’ on Facebook. I was humbled by what people shared, both in public and private, and although I had no expectations, it far exceeded the goal of connecting people with poetry.
Words heal – read, heard, spoken and written. And so it goes … I will go to bed tonight, mindful and thankful that I have a bed to sleep in, warm clothes, shelter and food. Peace out.