A child’s sweet burden


Sugar cane Robert Chisanga



There were many incidences when life should have told me that I had no leading role to play, and yet as you will see from my story, there hardly ever was another player under the spotlight. I was singularly different. Being different was like owning an empty space, a kind of internal bush clearing that defined me, that separated me from the common forest pulse. Being a child in that lonely metaphorical bush clearing of obscurity and self-assumed alienation, I was forced to find my own drum to beat. In a strange way, I was happy – in the end familiarity breeds comfortability.

Children carry a lot of the adult burden: rules, restrictions, societal likes and dislikes; all shifting cargoes that tax their free-spirited little shoulders, and for which they are given little credit or respect. I know this: Acclaim was not given for my great mythological battles singlehandedly lost and won.

This book is as a result of a swelling urge within me to question the realness of that bush clearing within me, and my never-ending awareness of it throughout my childhood. It was my quirk, my tic; a pang of hidden knowingness; an urgency of spaced being within me.

Allan Taylor, author, Luanshya musings

Fire on a tinder dry vlei

Deaprojekt Die Welt der Puppen

Deaprojekt Die Welt der Puppen

Black ash, bruised light, broken sound in a shocked stillness – was there anything good left behind? Yes: black is the charcoaled colour of purification. There is a surreal snowstorm of twirling black leaf forms returning to the vlei: an uncanny backdrop for the cattle egrets, undertakers dressed in white, with bowed heads and feathered hands clasped behind their backs. They stoically perform high-stepped funeral marches across the carpets of ash, collecting all the dead bodies: crisp grasshoppers, heat-bloated ticks, and toasted centipedes. They leave the shrivelled remains of baby toads, field mice and weaver chicks for the ever-watchful hawks that hover above this al fresco open grill. Is that the marabou stork, the ignominious king of carrion? With his naked head, puce air sac, cracked and peeling beak, and long ashen legs, he looks as if he has been scorched himself; but it is his funeral finery. He is in fine fettle to carry away the larger mammalian, and reptilian carcasses. If they aren’t quite dead, they soon will be – a sharp beak protrudes from below his rapacious eyes.

Allan Taylor, author Luanshya musings

Amazonite rain

It was awe-inspiring…

This dream rain quickly took possession of his harsh world. Steaming pendules of green amazonite and weighty beads of silver and turquoise: It was an equatorial deluge that housed the mechanics for unstoppable growth. Its brazen freshness tickled his cracked senses.It was as if a universal truth that had lain limp within him for so long, was now uncurling its leaves. A turgidity of spirit urged him to express himself in harmony with nature’s exuberance.                                                                                                                                                


                                     Amazonite on Albite, Colorado      

Inner magic on a material plane

Decision making is no easy task. As a geomancer at heart, Ah Hum naturally turned to his allies:

Amazonite and fennel seed oil: to release mental blockages in the expression of his deepest inner truths and needs.

Sugilite and peppermint oil: to enhance intuition and lucid dreaming.

Labradorite and myrrh: symbols of the unavoidable synchrodestiny in his life.

Allan Taylor. author, Luanshya musings

Pod mahogany

Pod mahogany


I thought it strange that I had never before seen what was in his garden, the biggest anthill I had ever seen. Surely I would have noticed it before. It took up most of his front garden. Maybe it wasn’t there before, maybe it was somewhere else, but it was certainly there now. Could anthills shift their shape? It also had the largest pod mahogany tree that I had ever seen growing out of its crown. Were both the anthill and the pod mahogany apparitions in incarnate form?

My second postulation was that a pod mahogany seed had been brought to both anthills in a traditional necklace as part of a burial ritual. I had always felt lucky that I had a pod mahogany growing on my anthill, double lucky because the pod mahogany is also known as the inkehli lucky bean tree. It produces hard, black seeds with a bright red wattle like the ground hornbill. The Ndebele women of Matabeleland used lucky beans in tribal necklaces, especially for the unbetrothed. Maybe an Ndebele woman had died young, and had been buried in my anthill, whereupon a pod mahogany seed from her funeral adornment had grown in honour of her spirit. This would make this magnificent tree on my anthill all the more special, but surely this romantic story couldn’t be applied to both our anthills and both our trees?

Allan Taylor, author Luanshya musings

     Picture. Jenny Hisin

Victoria Falls

The boat train chugged through a microcosmic rain forest permanently buffeted by the clouds of rain and hot air that were forced out of the bowels of the Zambezi River. It was a strange oasis sitting in the middle of a leafless grey African bush, suffering yet again from a taxing dry season… a Utopian world perched on the edge of basalt cliffs and ravines that hurtled your senses down into the waters of an angry river below.

Allan Taylor, author, Luanshya musings.

Chris Mclennan

                                   Chris Mclennan


Thinking humanity 2

It is he: the Observer

Without him, I would be unable to measure my true worth.

His omnipotence is the catalytic spark that births the creative force that I am.

He is the aethereal power whose presence coalesces my spirit into the physical being that is me.


It is I: the Observed

I am not a singular linear self-contained happening. I am like a mote of dust in a swirling desert sandstorm, a minuscule reflection of a multi-faceted field of existence and creative expression.

I am a microcosm that unwittingly mirrors the vastness of the universal whole as my own small reality.

As small as I am, I am an integral part of an intense, non-localised field of creativity that is here, there and everywhere, all of the time.

When my small seeing eye observes the patterns of this quantum sandstorm of which I am part, I localise into my ‘time and place’ frame. The dust settles and my life takes form, but I am still of the non-stuff of a creative universe.

That is when my Soul energy will birth my kind: be it a rebirth of my own being or a new birth of a child, or an act of loving kindness unconditionally given.

Allan Taylor, author Luanshya musings


The African night

Turkana African Soul

                        Turkana African Soul.

Black was the feminine darkness that caressed me every night. She could be voluptuous, velvet, and soft; that’s when I could smell her jasmine pepper-sweet body. But she could also be black ice, cold and sharp and unsympathetic to my whimpers and muffled groans on those close nights that choked me. She carried this distrustful sting of ambivalence even when she was running her long fingers of sweat through my tangled hair. I could have feared and hated her – but I didn’t: I loved her, and always would. She was my black spirit of sensual addiction. Her nightcaps were of sequins embroidered on rich velvets of dark plum, burnt caramel, and indigo. Colours dependent on the time of night, dust in the air, fires on the horizon, phases of the moon, lurking storm clouds – or simply the midnight closeness.

She was a Mephistopheles who kept strange company: arguing parents, barking dogs, the ghosts of distant hyenas, unknown owl calls, or the unsettling shriek of a bush baby in distress. Her smell then, was a fetid waft from a swamp – or was it that our septic tank was blocked? I used to ponder as to why our septic tank always belched at night, and never during the day.

Allan Taylor, author Luanshya musings


Kunzite - Konar Province, Afghanistan

     Kunzite – Konar Province, Afghanistan: Bijoux-et-mineraux  

Ah hum’s roots – I love

In strength Ah Hum’s emotions were the ground on which he was able to stand tall and fight in the name of love; whereas in situations of weakness his emotions were a pitiful flight of lost love. When his roots were nurtured, they gave him his positive determination to continue loving; when he abused them with spurned love, they spewed up a directionless lassitude which turned into resentment.

Love was a complex state of being that needed the support of powerful allies. Out of his alchemist’s calico bag he drew:

Hiddenite and orange blossom oil: tokens of heartfelt gratitude.

Aventurine crystals and melissa leaves: to symbolise the sweet harmony of spiritual and emotional growth.

Watermelon tourmaline and unction of nard: symbols of loving kindness since ancient times.

Rose quartz and rose oil: the eternal symbols of unconditional love.

Kunzite and palma rosa oil: the possession of which would induce a state of inner peace within him.

Allan Taylor,author Luanshya musings


Unconditional love African Soul

Love is a building block of an awareness that we ‘are’. We would not build upon our conscious awareness without the focused desire to be ‘one’ with someone – those are the mechanics of attraction that we loosely call love.  Without the first grain of love to build upon, our awareness, which is a wide open facet of our Soul, would drift quietly away from us in haphazard detachment and indifference. In such a vague state of existence we would not be given the chance of physical and cognitive growth in the swirl of universal happenings.

Allan Taylor, author Luanshya musings