Saturday, July 1, 2017

USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fwd: The Largesse of Little Things

Sent from my iPhone

Begin forwarded message:

From: Akwasi Aidoo <>
Date: July 1, 2017 at 5:09:58 AM GMT+1
To: Akwasi Aidoo <>
Subject: The Largesse of Little Things

​Dear Friends & Colleagues,

Whew!  It's been a long time.  Writing, walking, witnessing & welcoming have consumed my days; and happily so, I must add.​  There is so much to tell from what's happened, but I will go one small story at a time.

Last week and earlier this week, I saw the future of Africa and it was in alluring shape and spirit. Not without a bit of antagonisms here and there, of course, but overall I felt energized to live the rest of life with a clearer sense of what's possible and the direction to it.

I was at a retreat in South Africa with a group of young Africans who are dedicated to a peaceful continent; and the heartening take-away was that it's all about the little things we can collectively do with ceaseless and limitless passion. Then this morning, the Writer's Almanac dropped this famous and beautiful little poem by Julia Carney (one of the globally inspiring 19th Century poets):

Little Things
by Julia A. Carney

Little drops of water,
      Little grains of sand,
Make the mighty ocean
      And the pleasant land.

And the little moments,
      Humble though they be
Make the mighty ages,
      Of eternity.

So our little errors,
      Lead the soul away, 
From the paths of virtue,
      Into sin to stray. 

Little deeds of kindness,
      Little words of love,
Make our earth an Eden,
      Like the heaven above

This poem has been analyzed extensively over the centuries, so I will only highlight its pertinence in these dispiriting times when the mighty gains in human freedom, peace and dignity are apparently under threat of regression again. We've got to keep on keeping on, a swing at a time.

On the last day of the retreat, my brain kept silently swinging about the largesse of little things, and the words of the science fiction writer, Vernor Vinge, came to mind: "Even the largest avalanche is triggered by small things." The inspiration led to a series of poem drafts, the smallest one being this:

Tomorrow's Gain
by akwasi aidoo

Tomorrow's Gain
            will come unbridled

when the SoulLock breaks
            and the light of struggle

turns gloom to bloom,
            with your break-away moves, and

a new beginning of seeds planted,
            impossible yesterday,

unshackles the wings for
            A Free Africa!

In closing, here's a link to a song to make your weekend for its largesse of little things (it's by the Kenyan & Zimbabwean legendary musicians: Eric Wainaina & Oliver Mtukudzi. Enjoy!

With Peace & Love!


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