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Roger White,  

poet / writer / reviewer (poetry),  Canada / Israel.
(1929 - 1993)

See the biography written by Rob Weinberg about Roger White's life.

Day Seven

Conditional Truces

Surfeited with bright social exchanges,
he eludes the convival congregation of pilgrims,
sets out for the Shrine of the Master,
walking slowly, relishing the scent,
the gentle morning sunlight, his solitude,
picking his way among -he smiles at a knot
of youngsters bound for school -the children of

savouring the metaphor, Isaiah´s words flitting
lightly across the screen of his mind,
...and ye shall be gathered one by one,
O ye children of Israel...
when the refracted light
suddenly cancels the green day
presenting to him a mirage, a trackless desert,
with a suddenness that takes his breath away.
Fishing for his notebook he remembers
the desert place of Matthew, Mark and Luke
and writes, resting on a low stone wall:

  "In the sandy convolutions of this landscape
  grainy, parched and impersonal as God´s
  perception shifts and shimmers
  and the crazed hot wind mutters

excerpt from a 34 page epic-poem,
Notes Postmarked
The Mountain of God
, 1992.,
Published by New Leaf Publishing, Richmond, BC, Canada.

Excerpts from...
Lines for a Widower

In January 1982 six members of a Bahá'í administrative body in Iran, together with the hostess in whose home they met, were seized and killed for refusing to recant their faith. The husband of the hostess choice to deny his belief and was spared.

The reticent saints say nothing of apostasy
so let us turn to you. Were you widowed
by your cowardice or did sanity grip you in its
cool fever, moistening your blistered palms
to ease release from the burning cord of covenants?
We cannot guess waht tremors stormed your ribcage
when the raging men swept through your home
to seize its brightest ornament.
her small white knuckles knotted with conviction
as she strode out to meet the harsh divorce of bullets....

...Do your children acknowledge as mother
your cold-eyed concubine, remorse,
who lays by your side wakefully
through the slow dark hours
listening to your heartbeat and
fingering her slender knife?
How shall we testify?
Give us your answers, quickly. Quickly!
Angry hands are beating on our door.

Roger White, 1982, Israel.
Excerpts from My Calamity is My Providence, an anthology of poetry in response to the perscution of Bahá'í’s in Iran, compiled by Tahirih Khodadoust Foroughi, 1984.

  • Poem: Lines for a Widower: Arts Dialogue, June 2001
  • Book Reviewed: One Bird, One Cage, One Flight: by Anneke Buys, Arts Dialogue, March 1995
  • Memories of him: in letters from Yoke Hoey and Kathleen Hite Babb, BAFA newsletter, December 1993
  • Lyrics: O Desire of the World to music by Jean South, BAFA newsletter, December 1993
  • Tributes to Roger White:
    by Anne Gordon Perry, Anneke Buys, Duane Herrmann, Jean South, Sen McGlinn, Hazel Mori, BAFA newsletter, September 1993
  • Book Reviewed: Notes Postmarked The Mountain of God by Sen McGlinn, BAFA newsletter, September 1993
  • Book Reviewed: Occasions of Grace: by Anneke Buys, BAFA newsletter, March 1993
  • Poem: Belated Hanukka, BAFA newsletter, December 1992
  • Announcement: new book of poetry, Occasions of Grace, BAFA newsletter, September 1992
  • Profile: Jean South: Service through song, BAFA newsletter June 1992
  • Creative Writing: "Bring Chocolate", BAFA newsletter January 1991
  • Creative Writing: excerpt of "The Lotus of Bahapur", BAFA newsletter January 1991
  • Review: of "Prickles and Roses" by Hazel Mori, BAFA newsletter January 1990
  • Letter: Questions and Answers, BAFA newsletter October 1989
  • Review: of "Lotus Flower" by Rosemary Underhill, BAFA newsletter July 1989
  • Letter: Drama and Poetry, BAFA newsletter, July 1989
  • Article: Profile of Michael Fitzgerald, BAFA newsletter December 1988

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