I Can Feel…

•February 28, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I can feel the weight of the world on my shoulders

I can feel a strong wind pushing me back, closer to the edge of a cliff

I can feel thorns breaking through my shoes, my skin. Making me weak.

I can feel the pain of others in my mind.

I can feel my own suffering, its too much.

But then, I can feel Him.

I can feel the weight lift from my shoulders.

I can feel the wind turn into a cool breeze.

I can feel my mind go to rest.

I can feel his warmth, his smile, his strength.

I can feel Him put His arms around me.

I can feel Him holding me in His arms.

I can feel peace for the first time, in a long time.

I can feel His love.

I Am Who I Am

•February 28, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I am who I am

I cannot fly, change people’s hearts, or am perfect.

I cannot describe myself, for every day I become older, wise or foolish you can judge.

I am who God made me to be

I am trying my best to stay on this road of suffering,

But with God’s help anything is possible.

Peace

•February 28, 2010 • Leave a Comment

It is the color of a light blue like a clear sky.
It sounds like the wind, a wind blowing across a parrie.
It tastes of bitter sweet
It smells of a pine forest
It looks like clear ocean water, with the most colorful coral and beautiful fish.
It makes me feel free from the chains of judgment, guilt, sorrow, and worries that I have everyday of my life.

The Highwayman

•February 28, 2010 • Leave a Comment

“The wind was a torrent of darkness among the gusty trees. The moon was a ghostly galleon tossed upon cloudy seas. The road was a ribbon of moonlight over the purple moor, and the highway came riding, riding-riding. The Highwayman came riding, up to the old in door.” The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes is one of my favorite poems and indeed a classic. It is a beautiful poem and shows amazing visual images. The poem has many meanings to me, you just have to read between the lines. The Highwayman shows many different aspects of love: the passion, beauty, and the sacrifice of it.

The poem opens up with the Highwayman riding up to the Inn door to meet Bess, the landlord’s black haired daughter. Bess likes to tie a dark red love-knot in her hair, waiting for her highwayman to appear. This scene where you read about the highwayman and Bess is very beautiful. Noyes describes the highwayman as dumb as a dog when near Bess. To me this is amazing metaphor, because dogs love humans. Even if their master beats them, a dog will always love them. A dog’s love is pretty amazing. When the highwayman leaves Bess, he tells her that he will be back by tomorrow night even though Hell will bar the way. To me, this is also an amazing gesture of dedication to his her. For even if hell stood between him and Bess, he would go through and not let it win.

The sacrifice that is made is when Bess kills herself in order to save her lover from the men that came to kill him. She made the best sacrifice someone could make, to die for another person. It also wasn’t easy for her to kill herself as well. She had to struggle to put the musket pointing at her breast and pull the trigger. The landlord’s daughter made a selfless decision, she was not thinking about herself but for another. That is what love should be, selfless.

The world has changed so much to where people will have love for their own amusement. Another amazing thing about this poem is that is shows how certain people play with love. King George’s men both tease Bess, like she is just there not only for their trap but also for their amusement. “They had tied her up to attention, with many sniggering jest,” they were looking at her like she was something that was there for their personal amusement, not a person with feelings. This is how the world acts today; people today only care about themselves and not for others.

The Highwayman shows how love is and should be today. So many people do not know the meaning of love. Their definition of love is making out or having sex with who ever and whenever they want. The world has become selfish in it’s own way, not caring for other people but themselves. People should read The Highwayman and should learn from this poem on how to love one another. They should learn how to properly love, so that they can make a difference in this world.

Breaking Free

•February 28, 2010 • Leave a Comment

The day was hot and humid, the ocean bluish brown. Andi, Kirk, Kirk’s brother Ian, Josh, Jesse and I decided to go to Rat Island. It felt like a good day to go. The ocean was calm and it seemed like there weren’t any jellyfish out. We had been kayaking for a while and every stroke we made, the lonely island began to get bigger. It seemed like we would never get out there. It was in the late afternoon, when I would normally be taking my nap, so I was tired. Andi’s shoulder was also bad so I was doing most of the paddling. But that’s ok; I have good upper body strength. My arms ached and my legs felt useless as if they couldn’t do anything but watch as my arms suffered with every stroke.

Half way out there Kirk, Ian, and Andi decided to take a break and jump in the water to refresh themselves, my arms rejoiced at the rest. I didn’t go in, because I have a small fear of getting in deep water and not seeing whats around me. After the rest we continued our way out there. The island became bigger and bigger until I was actually standing on the beach. It was a beautiful day, but quite hot. We then made our way to the back of the island. There is in fact a rock that we swim to jump off of. Last time I went to jump off that rock I ended up getting attacked by a jellyfish, it was a fight for my life. Though I won the fight, the jellyfish left me with a cool battle scar. Whenever my friends suggest that we jump off the rock I start to get butterflies in my stomach, because of the adventure that lies ahead.

Kirk lead the way, as he always does, Andi second, Ian, and then myself. Josh was helping Jesse get to where we were, so they were a little bit slow. The swim out to the rock was dangerous; every swim stroke could be a jellyfish waiting, a rock unseen, or a huge crab wanting to suck you under and eat you alive! From where I was swimming I could tell that Kirk was able to get on the rock and help Ian up. Then I heard Andi yell out in pain, and it wasn’t one of those girl screams but a manly scream. Kirk then helped her onto the rock quickly, for a jellyfish had stung her on the leg. However, I was pretty lucky for the jellyfish was going in the opposite direction so I didn’t get stung as well. As I waited for my turn, my hand hit the rock next to me, cutting my finger in half! Well not really, but it did slice it pretty badly. Blood started to pour out of my skin and I could slowly feel the life draining out of me. I felt weak as if I wasn’t going to make it, but I was able to overcome that. When I finally was able to get to the rock Kirk told me to put my foot on a ledge, then held out his hand for me to take, and asked, “Your not going to let go of my hand are you?” There is a story behind this question, one time I did let go of his hand and went head first into a ditch. Ever since then Kirk has asked me that question when helping me. When I took his hand, his grip was hard and I could feel that he would not have let me go. It reminds me of God, how He is always there holding out a hand to help us through our lives. However, most of the time we find our own way, thinking we can do it on our own and in the end we end up getting hurt like I did when I fell. And when we do take His soft but yet hard griped hand, He doesn’t let us go.

The rock was warm once I got up onto it. Then we were about to jump off when suddenly a jellyfish came into view. One after another like the jellyfish were playing follow the leader, they came. We couldn’t jump off for fear of being stung and we couldn’t go back the way we came because of the jellyfish as well. We were marooned. With no food and no water it was a dangerous game. We had then decided to wait out the jellyfish rather than get stung by their stingers. When Josh and Jesse suddenly came into view, we told Josh to go get some sort of stick or pole to help kill the jellyfish with. Once he did, he slowly made his way out to us. Jesse stayed on the main island, as she is not the adventurous type like us. Once Josh made it out there, he wasn’t really much help for he was now marooned with us. Andi and I sat down and started to talk since there was nothing for us to do. When she saw my battle wound (the deep cut I got) She dramatically took off her shirt, don’t worry she was wearing a bathing suit, and started to rip it up. She soon had a strip of cloth for me to tie around my cut, but before she wrapped my wound up she took out a piece of rock that was still in it. The pain was so horrifying, but I was stronger than that. For I have had worse, then she gently wrapped my wound.

We five; Andi, Josh, Kirk, Ian, and I were marooned on the rock. Hunger began to slowly haunt us. The jellyfish began to win the battle, but we did not let them. We decided to wait them out. Since we had nothing to do I lied down on the rock and Andi came and lied down next to me, soon after Josh and Kirk came to join us. While Ian was trying to catch some jellyfish for us to eat; well not really, because that kind a sounds gross. After awhile he gave up and came to join us as well. So we pretty much just hung out on the rock waiting for the jellyfish to pass. I believe that it was the most peaceful time I have ever had with my best friends, I also think the left side of my face got a tan. As we lied on the warm rock we started to talk about the past, present, and future. We began to tell other stories of our trips out there, kind of like when little kids tell scary ghost stories around a campfire; however, ours weren’t that scary. It was good to laugh at old times and good to hear about our plans for the future. It was encouraging just to lye on a rock with your best friends, not worrying about the outside world but just what was happening at the moment. We encouraged each other, prayed for each other, and loved on each other. None of us cared about the time or the position on the sun, for it was close to sunset at this time.

Intermission
(This is where you can go to the bathroom or get a drink, preferable coffee.)

Finally we decided to take the way we came and face the jellyfish. The journey was a scary one, but I knew my friends had my back and wouldn’t allow me to get stung or hurt. Fear began to eat away at me, but I couldn’t become a coward and let it take over. I was the last one to jump off the rock, and I saw how the men and Andi did it. It seemed like nothing; however, I still had butterflies. As I jumped into the water, it felt cold but refreshing, since I had been lying in the sun for a while and was a tomato red on the left side of my face. The water surrounded me and it felt as if it didn’t want me to reach the surface but suck me under to the dark depths of it’s cold body. When I came up out of the water I scrambled onto a rock near by. As I waited for the next move I saw that Kirk was already on another rock giving directions as to were Ian should swim in order to avoid the jellyfish. The jellyfish were smart, but not that smart. For one thing, our brains are not made of water and jelly. Well our brains are mostly water, but not made of jelly! Anyways, slowly we were all able to make it out to the mainland and to safety. We had won the battle!

We were finally able to make it to the beach without getting stung by the jellyfish. Back on the island we decided to try to get on top of another rock, that Kirk had always wanted to get on but was never able to. Kirk was looking around at the bottom of the rock trying to find a foothold and while he was doing that, Ian decided to jump onto it. It was a mighty jump and it seemed like the world had suddenly gone into slow motion. I can still see Ian floating in the air looking like a ballerina with one foot in front and the other in the back, with his arms out above him. He landed on the rock with such gracefulness that it seemed he weighed no more then a white feather. From there he was able to find a place for us to climb onto the rock. Kirk was the first one on, then Andi, Josh, and me. I was the second to last one to climb to the top and the view was amazing, Josh came close behind me. I could see the proud look on Kirk’s face, he was finally able to beat the rock. For no rock can win against Kirk Maverick Saint Fraiser, he gets his way one way or another. We then wanted to jump off of the rock into the water; however, we were afraid that the water might be too shallow or there was a rock near by. So we did not, but we may someday.

It then began to get late, the sun was just over the hills and we still had to make it back, clean and put away the kayaks. We went back to were we left the kayaks and got our lifejackets on and made our way back to the real world. I was hesitant to leave; to go back to where suffering is, back to our everyday problems, and back to a place where we feel judged with every move we make. For Rat Island is a place where we can be free of that and just be ourselves. There is no suffering on Rat Island, except the ones we bring with us. But I have my friends nearby, they wouldn’t let me fall and if I did, they would be there to help me back up. We are always and will always be near each other to help, to encourage, love, and pray. That is the some of the best qualities of friendship.

Dedication

•May 22, 2009 • 1 Comment

I Dedicate this blog to Mrs. Gwaltney and her 9th grade English Class 2008-2009

800,000 People in 100 Days

•May 22, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Rwanda is a small country in Africa bordering Uganda, Burundi, Zaire (D.R. Congo), and Tanzania. The country has two major ethnic groups: The Hutus and Tutsis. The Hutus and Tutsis have been able to live in peace for six hundred years with no problems. They have shared land, language, and traditions. Some of them have even married. However, when Rwanda was taken over one ethnic group was favoured over another. Then began one of the worst genocides known in history.
In 1919, Belgium seized control over Rwanda. The Belgium’s favoured the Tutsis more than the Hutus, giving them better jobs and higher ranks. They made Identification Cards for the Rwandan people to tell what ethnic group they were from. The Tutsi people began to get use to it and started treating the Hutus like peasants. When Belgium gave back Rwanda its independence in 1962, there was tension between the two ethnic groups. When elections went up, Parmehutu (Party for the Emancipation of the Hutu) won. Kigali, who hated the Tutsis, was there leader.
When Kigali came into office, thousands of Tutsis fled, those who stayed behind were tortured and killed. Most of them were killed with machetes and clubs. Hutus were encouraged to kill their neighbours, friends, and even family members (if they were Tutsi). It was estimated that ten thousand Tutsis were killed each day. People would see bodies in the Kigara River heading towards Lake Victoria. The UN had an emergency meeting in New York; however, they only had two-hundred soldiers in Rwanda. Most Tutsis had to defend for themselves.
Tutsi refugees formed the Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF), a guerrilla army. The RPF attacked Rwanda many times, but failed. In July 1994, the RPF were able to able to capture Kigali and stop the killings. When the RPF took control, two million Tutsis fled. The country was in ruins, the genocide left millions of orphans, widows, widowers, disable, and homeless. However, the most effected were young women and teenage girls who were abused.
The RPF encouraged the Hutus to return back to Rwanda; however, it took a long time before they did return. Even today, Rwanda is still repairing its past and rebuilding the relationships of the two ethnic groups. It will take awhile before the two ethnic groups will be able to trust each other again. However, Rwanda is on the road to recovery.