tears in the sky

it has rained for three days
rain and fog and mist for two
and yesterday – more rain in a day
than usual for the whole month

the land itself was grieving
for the ones who’ve left us
for voices silenced
for songs unsung

Te Ihorangi and Hinewai
are the gods of rain and mist
male and female together
holding us in their embrace

as mist lay heavy on the hills
cloaks woven of all the tears
we’ve shed these last few days
these last few months

crying with us
until we are ready
to stand and turn our faces
to the sun

©Claire Griffin 2016

In this land, rain is often interpreted as a sign of grief, as if the land itself is crying in recognition of the passing of a great leader. This is an extract from the lament, ‘E pā tō hau’, for Te Wano of the Ngāti Apakura tribe:

E ua e te ua e taheke
Koe i runga rā
Ko au ki raro nei riringi ai
Te ua i aku kamo.

Come then, O rain, pour down
Steadily from above
While I here below pour forth
A deluge from mine eyes.


Citation: Basil Keane, ‘Tāwhirimātea – the weather – Rain’,
Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand,
(accessed 13 November 2016)
Full story by Basil Keane, published 12 Jun 2006

darker (r.i.p. L.Cohen, sincerely)

tears fly
like a thousand birds
into a midnight sky

I hold your voice
in the palm of my hand
my skin vibrates
with every breath

your words surround me
confront and shelter
the essence of what it means to be male
expressed in every husky rumble
and nuanced vowel
my very bones are shaking
as your low tones reverberate, resonate

my dreams are waking
from the dread I’ve carried
that you’d soon be gone

its been nothing but rain and fog
for two whole days
while you climbed the stairs
to your tower of song

I’ve lit a candle
I’ll keep it burning
I don’t want it any darker

©Claire Griffin 2016


3 day quote challenge : Day One

Christina recently nominated me to take part in the 3 Day Quote Challenge. However – I think I neglected to approve the link from her blog to mine – and so missed the boat!!

Still, I’d really like to thank her for this idea because its made me think about the words of others which have deeply resonated with me, which have stayed with me for a long time, and which I’d like to share.

Please check Christina’s blog “Stealing Time in Quiet Disorder” .

The “rules” of the 3 Day Quote Challenge:

  • Post one of your favorite quotes (a different quote each day) for three consecutive days. The quote can be from your favorite book, author, or your own. 
  • Nominate three bloggers to challenge them. 
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you.


I’d like to nominate:

Andy: Poetry is my aeroplane

Ruth: Life, living, work and play

Charlotte: A Comfort Zone …

Please don’t feel obligated to participate in this challenge.


I’ve chosen the words of three of my male inspirators/muses:

Day One

from the song “Anthem” – by Leonard Cohen (from the 1992 album “The Future”)

There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.”

I know this is quoted over and over again – but that’s because it is so powerful. The suggestion is that the light, the spirit, the inspiration, the revelation – whatever you want to call the positive, the illuminating – enters through the “cracks” – in our bodies, in our lives, in our relationships, in our souls.

Nothing is perfect – in fact perfection, the closer we come to it, may in fact be perceived as lifeless. It is all the little mistakes, stumbles, noises, marks, scribbles, smudges, that connect us to the living. They are the signs of the artist’s presence, that a human being has lived and moved through a space, touched and left evidence of their existence.

Kintsugi is the ancient Japanese practice of repairing a cracked or broken bowl with gold. The damaged area becomes beautiful and valuable. This may also be related to the philosophy of wabi-sabi – where the imperfect object and the marks of use and age are respected and valued.

The use of gold in kintsugi both highlights and beautifies the crack, the imperfection – just as the light in Cohen’s song.