A Garden of Eden Destroyed; and Renewed

Many of us have special spaces in nature that we have grown to know intimately and love deeply. For me that space is a piece of land above my house in Naivasha, Kenya. I call her Eden. She was a wild place full of trees, grasses, birds and wild animals. A river flows along her border and huge volcanic rocks dot her fields. One day a developer began bulldozing her to make a golf course. He died before finishing and left sweet Eden torn up and wounded. I longed to be able to buy her, redeem her and tend her wounds. The bank reclaimed her and put her up on auction. I felt so helpless and wept for her future. Out of my brokenheartedness I wrote this poem as a prayer. Imagine our beautiful earth, the archetypal ‘Eden’, and pray for her with me, will you?

Eden by Miriam Cochrane Smith

Her name is Eden,

Her beauty renowned.

A necklace of diamonds sparkles as it flows down and around her neck,

the light dancing joyfully over each droplet.

         Have you met her?

Her skin is dark, moist and healthy,

covered by folds of fabulous color,

blending a hundred shades of green into rich brilliance;

allowing sparks of yellow, pink, blue and red

to surprise her as they wish.

        Has she surprised you lately?

She laughs and giggles as her animal friends play,

snuggling in her lap.

She embraces them all,

settling quarrels and feeding each one.

“No one need go hungry or be without shelter,”

she whispers.

        Can you hear her?

Young Eden is gorgeous and fruitful,

Her body proudly displayed, unafraid of danger.

She has always been showered by Sun’s bright rays

and held tight by Love’s Holy Gravity.

        Are you in awe too?

Tomorrow the slave traders will come to take her to market.

“She will bring a good price,” they conjecture.

“Look at her beauty! Her womb is ripe.

Yes, she will bring us much profit and pleasure.”

Please! No! Stop!

She is Eden,

Innocent. Pure. Beautiful.

Elemental. Eternal. Essential.

She is not ours to buy and sell, crudely measuring her value in coins.

Please! No! Stop!

Our Eden is living, longing, loving.

          Why can’t you hear her song?

She is Eden!

Mother, daughter, sister, friend.

          Who told you you could own her?

But she knows how this goes, she’s been here before;

on the auction block waiting.

The hammer falls and her fate is sealed.

I cry out in heartbroken protest.

         Have you cried for her too?

Through my veil of tears, I refuse to look away

even though I am terrified by what they might do to her.

She is so fresh and full of life, so trusting and unafraid.

She looks at me and smiles. She knows me well.

I’ve tried my best to learn her language and listen to her song.

I’ve massaged her soil with the touch of my feet.

I’ve whispered hope and healing into her bones,

and gratefully received her gifts.

I ache to be able to redeem her and release her;

to tend and care for her the way she cares for all her friends.

They miss her so, and she misses them.

They used to brush her hair, tickle her skin and make her laugh.

I am weeping now, feeling so helpless.

She starts singing her familiar song,

but this time I understand the words.

My child, my little child,

please know this: Love Never Fails.

The Sun will shine, my seeds will grow,

‘they’ can’t stop the birds.

Love Never Fails.

My soil is deep, my wells eternal,

‘They’ can’t stop the flow.

Love Never Fails.

The Tree of Life grows in my soul,

‘They’ can’t stop my heart.

Do not worry, my child,

Love Will Not Fail.

     I will be redeemed.

     I will be healed.

     I will be restored.


(Click on the link below to access the whole poem in a downloadable pdf)

Eden Poem

Thriving Requires Partnership

Thriving Requires Partnership

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