Within arid depths of a land below
abides the humble village of l’Ambaro.

A world where clothing is prized but threadbare;
a world where meals are luxuries proved rare.

A world where days with famine are fraught;
a world the remaining earth long forgot.

But this is a place where
pure are the hearts,
simple are the joys,
the love of each part.

Where drums hum daily
their languid song,
enchanting the children
all the day long.

Where families dance into
the hallowed night,
merriment echoing
under faint moonlight.

Where sand curls freely
about their feet,
naked, synchronized,
stomped to each beat.

Until finally twilight
snatches the hills,
descending upon them
a shuddering chill.

Then filled with cheer
they part by the number
into their huts to
unite in deep slumber.

This is the place the world left behind–
a place that will always be in the back of my mind.

•      •      •


 My host village of Ambaro, Southern Madagascar

40 replies »

  1. Phoebe,

    Thanks for leading us back to this post. It has taken me a little while to even begin to understand why I would want to blog, to put my words out there in the world for people to own for themselves. In those early days, your blog fascinated me with its breadth and depth and honesty and compassion. Knowing that your day job keeps you busy. both physically and emotionally, uncovering this human with such a deep connection with something greater in our own collective humanity spoke profoundly to me. Leading all of us back to this post, lead me to that understanding for myself.

    I write because I feel some deeper connection with what we are as humans and need to find a vehicle to express that. You do it very well and it shows in the profundity of your words. Here, a village the world forgot, but without the world they still fill their lives with love for one another and dance and family. They are more community than our fractured ones that we leave behind as we head out into the world.

    Let us remain in touch, as I continue to weave my deeper self back into the words I write and out of the traps set by the day-to-day world of meeting others expectations, I know I will continue to learn from you and hope you accept me as a pupil to help me broaden and deepen my understanding our greater humanity.


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