Salt of the Earth

Salt of the Earth

I will apologise in advance for the lack of creativity on the English side. I wrote this piece originally in Afrikaans and will try to relay the emotion as best as I can.

It is that time of the year where Namibians share their green photos. Photos of green grasslands, flowing rivers and storms on the horizons. And it is right. It is beautiful. But I have just returned from a barren corner of Namibia where rain has not touched Earth in a very long time.

If indeed the clouds should burst open the birds that are usually the first to rejoice would be quiet. Most feathered friends from this area have moved on to another area where hopefully their survival rate would be on the up. Those that chose to keep fighting the unbearable heat would be quiet as it would be their first experience with this earthly miracle.

The animals with their thick, thirsty tongues would move tenderly to the nearest little pool to drink the promise of more. And then they too will just stand. Stand-and-wait is something these animals have mastered.

And then the people of this barren land would come and also just stand. Face-up to the heavens above. And as the rains wet them, their tears will  unite with the drops of heaven and rush to the earth. Salt of the earth rain.

Photo taken on the hills of Kaokoland © Mariette du Toit, 2019

Dis hierdie tyd van die jaar wanneer mense hul groen velde, lopende riviere, en donderstorm foto’s deel, maar ek kom nou uit ‘n gedeelte van die land waar dit bitter lank gelede die seën van reën ervaar het.

Sou dit skielik hier begin reën sou die voëls wat gewoonlik eerste is om te kwetter en lawaai; stil wees. Die meeste geveerdes van hierdie gebied het reeds elders skuiling gaan soek teen die  verwoedende hitte. Die wat wel nog daar is sal eers stil wees onder die eerste druppels reën, want vir baie sal dit ‘n eerste wees.

Die diere wat die eindeloos geveg om lewe en dood oorleef het sal styf-styf na ‘n plassie hinkepink om lafenis vir hul dik geswelde tonge te vind. As die reën lank genoeg aanhou sal hul stil, tevrede, net staan. Want vir staan-en-wag verstaan hulle goed.

Die mense van hierdie gebied sal ook net staan en saam die druppels uit die lug, sal hul trane van dankbaarheid, van verligting, van lewe op die aarde neerplons. Sout van die aarde druppels.

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