‘Stand in the Light’ by Elizabeth Rimmer

Stand in the Light

Stand in the light.
Allow the wild things to creep
out of the shadows.
Welcome them all, the wet
bedraggled things, the ones
all spit and claws, the one
who weeps and hangs its head,
the one who stares, and says ‘Make me.’
Stand in the light. They are yours,
washed and unwashed alike.

Stand in the light, and sing.
Raise your voice as if
there was no fear of darkness.
Listen and you will hear
other voices, other songs,
rough and sweet and dauntless,
blues and canto jondo,
pibroch, nanha, tanakh.
Stand in the light and sing. Their pain
is yours. Allow it to hurt.

Stand in the light. Be still.
Light is what we need. Let it glow,
let it shine into the furthest dark
to find the lost forgotten hopes
and warm them to new life.
Allow it to grow and touch the ruined
homes and hearts and show us
what’s to mend. Stand in the light.
Be still. Become the light.
 
(previously unpublished)
 
 
Elizabeth Rimmer was born and educated in Liverpool and moved to Scotland in 1977. Poet, gardener and river-watcher, her roots are Catholic, radical, feminist and green. Her poems have appeared in Poetry Scotland, Northwords Now, Gutter, Brittle Star and Southlight. Her first full collection, Wherever We Live Now, was published by Red Squirrel in 2011, who also published her second, The Territory of Rain, in 2015. Currently she is working on poems about herbs, social and environmental upheaval, and strategies for responding to hard times.

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