The Beaches of Sri Lanka, My Mother Land, Our Fisher Folk’s Home

Reflection in response to the December 26th tsunami disaster 
by Sister Beatrice Fernando, SDS, Provincial Superior, Sri Lanka

We adored you and loved you,
We often visited you when in need,
In search of peace and serenity,
You had been our temple of contemplation,
You prepared a playground and a park all around Sri Lanka
For our children,
You welcomed our poor children, youth, adults and families
To enjoy life free of charge,
You were a physical and psychological health resort to all of us
And so to the foreigners

What happened to you on the 26th of December 2004
Your Christians were commemorating the Birth of Jesus
And for your Buddhists, it was Poya (full moon)
You called them to worship and enjoy life,

What happened? Why did you become a water dragon?
And swallowed up tens of thousands of your people,
Especially the elderly, women and children?
Why did you devastate our property and land
That was built up with hard labor and the sweat of our peoples
After the civil war?
Above all made us fearful of you!
We are terrified of you!
We want to run way from you,
Oh Beaches of Sri Lanka!

When will you become once again our mother and friend?
When will our fisher folk find a home in you again?
Do not threaten us.
Help us to be hopeful and to live again
We accept the message you gave us –
Unity through Forgiveness
Accept one another as sisters and brothers
Of one family, one nation!