By Nadine Garrod


Painting by Ruth Carneson[1]


I know she's there

Always wanting to burst out

And run like an unbridled pony

Her dark hair trailing in the summer wind

Free to jump and play and laugh out loud


I know she’s there

 Because she speaks to me in whispers

Asks me to unlock that part of me and set her free

Free to dance across the moors

Ablaze with purple scented heather


I know she’s there

Because she takes my hand

And dares me to do amazing things

That secretly I want to do

But fear gets the better of me


I know she’s there

Because I sense her presence

As I look into the dark night sky

And see her catching falling stars

And dancing with the angels


I know she’s there

Because she dances on my heart

And calls me to slide down the rainbow

Fight the awesome dragon

And smell the sweetest rose


I know she’s there

Because she climbs in my lap

And comforts me

When I feel alone and deserted

She smiles at me and wipes the tears

That tumble from my dark eyes


I know she’s there

Teaching me that wonderment

Is all that matters

That love can fill the universe

Come and dance with me she says

Nothing else matters

Because in dancing we discover what life

Is meant to be.



[1] Ruth Carneson, a daughter of anti-apartheid activist South African parents came to England as a teenager in 1967.  Her father had been jailed; her mother detained.  Ultimately the entire family was reunited in London.  Her traumatic childhood resulted in a condition of severe mental disturbance to her inner child that seemed only to escape through her paintings and in dancing.  She would certainly subscribe to Nadine Garrod's "in dancing we discover what life is meant to be." 

The picture illustrated above hangs in Joe Sinclair's home.  The story of the Carneson family's trials and tribulations was written by Ruth's older sister Lynn under the title Homage to Hope and published by ASPEN, London in 1996.  Ruth Carneson once more lives in South Africa.