Sunday, May 31, 2015

Mid Year - Zualteii Poonte

After the chilling start 
that left us uneasy
and braced for worse,
March arrived.

Seventeen years after the clampdown on alcohol 
when impoverished vendors 
furtively brewing spirits in jungles
were chased down, dragged to courts
and jailed with babies strapped to their backs
while at weddings and celebrations 
of the rich and well-connected,
liquor flowed, the red kind, always the rich red,
prohibition was lifted.

We waited
for the streets at dark 
to be peopled by drunks,
staggering, delirious, out of their minds.
It didn't happen.

Kelkang¹ happened instead.
Crowds upon crowds
flocking to the tiny village
to drink of the spirit,
for in the last days, I will pour out my Spirit
on all people. Your sons and daughters 
will prophesy, your young men 
will see visions and your old men 
shall dream dreams.

In the churches in the big city, 
drums beat urgently
voices rise in worship
bodies whirl like dervishes
and when the euphoria
does not, will not, abate, 
they take to the streets.

Yes, in May, warm, sultry May,
they walk the streets by night,
singing, dancing, praying, chanting,
punctuating the air with cries of hallelujah,
some so delirious they can hardly walk straight,
drunk on the power of the spirit.

As with every revival of the spirit,
darker forces awaken too,
undeniable testimony
a power is at work
we don't all fully understand.


¹ A little village close to the Myanmar border and unlikely venue of a spiritual revival.

Note: To be read in continuation of an earlier writing.