Sunday, July 17, 2011

Checking In on Bethlehem

The rain fell. The overcast sky upon the Korah area sets itself like a lid on an oppressive jar with gray overtones, expressionless, ominous. Intermittent shades of sun fade in and out only to have their faint smiles smeared away by the colorless cloth above, as the bright fog sweeps in and out in wraiths from up on high. The heavy stones laid down by the government decades ago lead us through the seeping mud, human and animal waste and decay toward Bethlehem, the little girl with HIV whose delicate part of her body is now in a state of protrusion due to what seems the incontrovertible conclusion that the causal agent of this malady came from a metfo wendt, an evil man, and his abominable passions.

Loud thunder claps leave us huddled in a joyous room where children now play and rejoice in a fresh spirit of freedom, relaxation and humor. There's a little one in here who is Bethlehem's age who literally crawls over her feringe guest. Grasping his head in her hands like a vice, the plants her face into his, kissing him with a long, protracted, smack! Coffee beans are roasting, and water is boiling, while popcorn is passed around by Bethlehem's mother in his small mud home where bright colors welcome visitors amidst the whirling cries of happiness from the children. Boom! Another thunder clap leaves our hearts in collapse as we wonder if the sheet metal roof will contain the streams pouring out from above, or will outlast the torrential winds; but there is no wind to match the conniption of the sky; there is only deep, thick lines of clear, liquid gall, and it disappears after ten minutes, but not before the smell of sewage seeps up in a faint mist from the aftermath. Ah, the streets of Korah.

Once, her demeanor was one of fear, cowardice and shame, but now Bethlehem's mother dresses in bright orange colors, which match the satisfaction on her face as she passes the coffee tray and popcorn to her guests, who sit and play with the whirling buzz of playful children in this new home, welcomed by a servant of Christ--a mother of young ones herself. The little one crawling up and down the feringe yells and screams and makes funny noises, like the prolonged singing of a rolling "r" in various tones and rhythms. This tune carries the gaiety of all in the small home, lit by more than the standard, single light bulb strung out on a thin piece of wire. In this home, there is light from the doorway, light from the window, light from other fixtures, as the rescued mother in the colorful shirt that says, "USA" fans the coals, while heating the water. Soon, there will be that black gold poured out for all to enjoy in little china cups. Some suquah (sugar) will make its taste like a deep forest bathed in golden light.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your experiences in Korah. It is always a joy & privilege to read your writings.