PNG class warfare: the predatory elite & its ‘willing’ prey
Kath Donovan: health worker who served PNG for many years

Promised potential


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Poetry Award

Potential is only a promise until it is fully realised. What can this generation do about its potential?

She is a paradise beyond words
Beauty beyond compare, potential unlimited, wealth most attractive,
First black developed country is the prophecy

Envy of those whose fountains of fortune have long run dry,
Her potential in many things great
Only simmer below the surface;
And promises remain buried

Stone axes and bone tools were her forefathers’ implements
But they did carve out an era more grandeur,
Honour was in giving, not taking

Now her enlightened sons and daughters serve warring masters,
Their potential lost in a maze of elaborate plans, policies and grand declarations;
She hangs on through generous servings of aid
And droppings from merchants of profit,
Buoyed by her natural resilience;

There are noises of squandering and squabbles,
A mountain of rhetoric reaches into the sky, like a desolate landscape,
And the Promises remain buried

Yet the children of tomorrow
Must continue to dream;
For without dreams,
There are only despair and death


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