• My little friend Langtham

    Posted by Stevie

    21 November, 2011

    Meeting Langtham was a very special moment in my life. He is one year old and lives in Lusaka, Zambia. Langtham has cerebral palsy ... as do I. From vastly different parts of the world, we shared a few minutes together. More than that, we share the way our bodies work. Here's a video about the day I met Langtham:

     

    After I came home to Australia, I wrote this poem, holding dear my encounter with him:
     
    Dear Langtham
    my little friend
    the meeting of our lives
    that moment in time
    my heart has framed
    Too young to remember me
    you will always be   
    remembered
    Diversity
    in our ethnicity, territory, opportunities
    the world between us
    a commonality we share –
    not an unfortunate affliction
    nor some spiritual retribution
    No, our bodies dance to a different beat
    our tongues, to a different tune
    Your song, is beautiful
    Your eyes are as rich
    as the soil from which
    life springs and takes root
    May your life be poetry
    speaking the deeper truth
    May your heart be warmed
    by your mother’s love
    as your skin is warmed
    by the sun
    May you treasure, nurture
    the space between mother and son
    May friends who are true
    walk beside you
    If you should be ignored
    insulted, excluded, avoided
    because you stagger and fall
    may you be one of grace
    not hate
    taking root
    in the truth
    that their spirits stagger and fall
    May your spirit stand courageous, tall
    strong, perceptive, aware
    the mountains declare
    each soul to be precious

    ______________________________

    Stevie Wills is a Young Leader for Create2change, an initiative of CBM Australia. Stevie travelled with CBM to South Africa and Zambia in March this year, so that, on her return, she could advocate for people with disabilities living in poverty. Stevie also joined us at Voices for Justice 2011 and her performance of this poem was one of the highlights of the event.