In Nicaragua

With years of study and experience, I came here to teach them.
I came to bring them knowledge of Jesus, plant medicine and honeybees.

I am welcomed no matter that my skin is lighter,
No matter that my Spanish makes them laugh.

I enter their door and I am home.
They allow me to hold their children
Whose eyes tell me someone loves them.
They meet me with Christ-like mercy, grace and love

Twenty-one women, one man, and five young children (three of them nursing babies)
We spend two days studying healing foods and herbs.
We drink Hibiscus infusions, read Dr. Rivera’s facts on Dandelion, Chamomile and Lavender.
We make tinctures, pills and salve from Rosemary Gladstar’s classic instructions
And eat Rosa’s healing chicken soup for lunch.

They empty the bags and boxes of knowledge I brought from home
Carry away samples of plant medicines we have made
And fill me with their knowing.

They bring “Albahaca Sagrada” (Holy Basil) in a pot,
Cut open fresh coconut that fell from the tree,
Make Calala (Passionflower) juice from fruit I bought in the market,
Place Cacao pods in my hand from a tree in the yard,

cacao
Break Moringa leaves and Noni fruit from low-hanging branches,
Describe how Jicaro is used to make a drink for nursing mothers,
Explain how honey heals disease of eyes and pain from birthing babies, and
Show me “Nannotrigona Perilampoides” stingless honeybees in the concrete wall nearby.IMG_3168
They change my life forever.

When I return to them, I will go empty with a blank book
I will listen to their stories of healing foods and herbs
And how they came to understand the love of God.
I
have so much to learn.

Patricia Tanner Candal

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 comments

  1. Patricia,

    Your trip to Nicaragua sounds amazing. What an experience!

    You convey so well the intense spirituality of the exchange.
    I think we could all learn from the people you met.

    This poetic home is alight with your safe return. So glad you are here!

    sarah

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  2. “Touch” in this picture, your featured image, is profoundly obvious—the lady’s hand near her face/hair (maybe she’s moving loose strands); folks’ hold on pens/pencils; writing tools scripts on paper; books are held; pages are turned; the youngster traces texture on the bracelet. Your poem, the weavings of words in story form, has touched me. Thank you, ptc. Jan

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  3. Hi Ptc

    So fascinating, beautiful and moving this account of you mission in Nicaragua! I love the way you detail the healing properties and the generosity of the human spirit — its ability to give, share and receive. I am drawn in by your words and your own sense of enlightenment –
    .
    They change my life forever.

    When I return to them, I will go empty with a blank book
    I will listen to their stories of healing foods and herbs
    And how they came to understand the love of God.
    I have so much to learn.

    Thank you for sharing this gorgeous account your recent experience. I was very moved by it!

    My best
    Wendy

    Like

    • Thank you for such kind words, Wendy. I have so many emotions from my experiences there, some from the herbal work, others from working with native stingless honeybees, still more from working with ten adolescent girls singing and making jewelry. Their country’s recent unrest has me watchful and prayerful about their future. Thank you again for your words.
      ptc

      Like

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