An African Spring


Following on Friday’s theme…

An African Spring (2)


Spring lasted six days this year,
Blowing on the embers from summer last,
Lifting spirits, hopes, desires,
The usual annual promises.

Then flames flared and summer hit with force,
Temperatures flew, soaring with eagles,
Rain stayed away, drying in the ground, flooding other landscapes,
Spring’s promise left forlorn, withering on vines and stalks.

African blue skies thrived on cloudless intervention,
Trees scorched, bushes burned, life languished
As heat drove thought from mind and strength from body,
Like a broom sweeping clean, leaving nothing but silence in its wake.


© 2017 Robin McShane


The African Bush

Bushveld - June 13 2016-20160527_160533

Day breaks early
Softly in the veld
Another night survived
For those who did.

Day feeders open the eye
Night feeders head to ground
A hand over of sorts

Soaking natures silence
Wrapped in sunlight clear
Voices dapple through the trees

Leaves burnt orange and falling
Weave mulch carpets
Where prints may leave a track

Days spent in sentient splendour
Far from city noise
Allow absorption of air so still

Soul nurtured through the scene
Until night feeders break their cover
And bed becomes my ground


© Copyright 2016 Robin McShane

An African Future

an african future - july 27 2015

In Africa, on a dank, dark day
Came a man who blew the winds away.
Across the plains he raced his horse,
Holding straight and true his course,
Before him sped the breeze of time,
Barren spaces, hoards sublime,
Wheeling, spinning, whirling, whorled,
People lost in this new world,
No excuses, arguments,
Simply life with no augments,
As it is, as it will be,
Grasp your future, set it free.
He moves too fast, this man of might,
Does not tarry, will not fight,
Eyes held forward on his goal,
Horizon bound, for us to know.


© Copyright 2015 Robin McShane

Africa – Winters Running Dry


Summer rain skips along,
Vibrant leaf to leaf,
Plays ping pong on the tiles,
Finds pathways of relief.

Soaking earth, feeding life,
Abundant verdant rules,
Creatures great and small,
Splashing in the pools.

Would it were still so,
As autumn pulls the moat,
Swallowing last droplets,
Echoing down it’s throat.

Leaving land now dry,
Verdant life no more,
Brown becomes the colour,
As pastures die to spore.

Winter here in Africa,
A dry, dry place to be,
Blue skies from horizons far
To horizons eyes can’t see.

No clouds now in sight,
Skies, they stand alone,
Life, it begs for moisture past,
Moisture long since gone.

A cycle growing shorter,
Dry summers becoming norm,
Green tubs lie all over,
Waiting for a storm,

Now collecting air,
Pouring from dead gutters,
As pumps lie still and quiet,
Not even drawing sputter.

Rationing the rational,
Choice of last resort,
Rivers running dry,
Life moves out, deserts.

Wonder not the future
For it has now arrived,
Sun burning brighter,
Water running dry.


© Copyright 2015 Robin McShane
As per this blog’s copyright
© Photo Copyright Micelle Coetsee

African Sights


Swathes of copper,
Drifts of blue,
Variant colours,
Furious hues,
Spectacle superb,
Light the candle,
Move the verb.

Forest glades,
Mountain streams,
Open beaches,
Sunlight’s beams.

This one country
Has it all,
Winter spring,
Summer fall.

South Africa,
The jewel of light,
Splendours, visions,
Days of sight,
Sound and smell,
Together as one,
Experience a lifetime,
On a journey just begun.




© Poetry and Photos Copyright January 2015 – Robin McShane
Rights reserved as per this blogs copyright statement

Plains of Africa

Summer rains have fallen,
The deluge just begun,
The brown of winter lifting,
Green leaves sprout for sun.

Landscapes change, as every year,
Desolation falling fast,
As nature begins painting,
The canvass endless, vast.

Land stretching to infinity,
Rolling from the eye,
Touching  heart and soul,
Reaching for the sky.

Dead brown plains of Africa,
Bursting with new life,
Show naturally how dreams evolve,
Sweetness, brightness, light.

Storm Clouds Over Africa


Storm clouds over Africa,
Dark, grey, green,
Jealousies of others lives,
Places been and seen.

Looking out then looking in,
Find a better day?
If we could only get control,
Yes, enforce our way.

And so we kill and maim and fight,
Power to be first,
Keep on taking, taking,
How to quench the thirst?

Each, in our own
Perspective of the world,
Look around, believe
Another’s more impearled.

Yet what is ours is ours alone
A benefit of light
And taken with us when we leave
Prepares us for the fight

© Copyright September 2014 – Robin McShane
All rights reserved as per this blogs copyright statement

Autumn Falls


     Whittled and brittle leaves

     Drop in the space of a breath.

     Life changes,

     Autumn falls,

     Lush green to auburn burnt,

     A clear African sky backdrop,

     And starkness left behind.

     Time to pause, reflect,

     Then move!

In Tribute To Nelson Mandela

On the eve of the 5th South African elections since 1994, I offer the poem I wrote on the day we
were told Nelson Mandela was pronounced dead. May our new leaders, whoever they may be, heed the song…

On a day when the world cries, the heavens sing,
On this day when we feel the loss, the heavens praise their gain,
On the day Madiba breathed his last, his soul sings in the freedom of the heavens,
And his song echoes on and on.

Through the halls of time his presence has shone and his words rang,
In the hearts of man their meanings sank in and resonated,
All were changed by his being, all are changed by his touch,
From rural to great he remained a servant to the greater good, a carrier of light.

His time has come, shedding the soul’s shell he steps forward and onward,
Forever a leader, forever a light, forever a beacon to guide those who wish to be guided,

And those who stay behind can choose,
Follow where the great man led,
Practice his ways of being,
Light our world with love and compassion,
Be guided by his light,

Or take your road of selfish gathering and reap what you now sow.
The circle of life is forever flowing.
What we each put in comes around again to serve us.
Put in light and love, place others needs before your own and this comes back to you a thousand fold,
But put yourself above all others and all that returns to you is you…..alone….
Wondering why and crying in the darkness and the night – Why have you been forsaken?

Is this not just the circle?
As you forsake others, so you, yourself, are forsaken?
Surround yourself with just you and that is all there is…just you…for eternity.
Share your energy and light and love and you become a part of it all, joining the energy of all that is…for eternity.

Take the example the great man has given us, heed his life and being,
Follow his way, in your way,
Put more in than you take,
Give more than you need,
Place the needs of others before your own,
Join Madiba’s song,
Live his legacy,
Grow his vision,
Add value to those around you that their life becomes richer in ways that cannot be measured
But can be counted upon and can mean more than can be counted,
Rise up sons and daughters of Africa,
Ride the tide of people centered living and build the nation Madiba saw,
The Rainbow Nation of life, love, understanding, giving and sharing,
Be greater than you are or think you can be,
And so it will be.

What greater tribute could we offer…

© Copyright 2014 Robin McShane