By popular demand, here is the poem performed tonight by Mark Norton, Jeremy Taylor, and Dan Elliott at LittWorld’s Got Talent!
’Twas the last night of LittWorld and all through the house
Every creature was dancing, including the mouse.
The music, the worship, the teaching so intense:
All were exhausted, but everything made sense.
How did we get here? What has happened this week?
Let’s go back to Monday and take a quick peek.
The delegates were nestled all snug in their beds,
With visions of workshops dancing in their heads.
John Maust in his kerchief and Ramon in his cap
Had just settled down for a well-deserved nap.
When out on the sidewalk there arose such a clatter,
They sprang from their beds to see what was the matter.
Away to the window they trudged, nice and slow,
Drew back the curtain, and muttered, “Oh no.”
The moon on the crest of the Brackenhurst lawn
Showed them immediately something was wrong.
And what to their sleep-deprived eyes should appear
But Ian Darke, in the dark, in his running shoes!
He spoke not a word but just dashed out of sight,
As John tried to salvage what was left of the night.
He tried to remember the full day’s best moments,
But he kept getting stuck on the pre-conference torments.
Anticipation had been building for opening day
With early bird workshops to teach those who came.
But where’s Jeremy and Bernice? What happened to Dan?
They were stuck in Nairobi awaiting a van.
Eventually everyone arrived at the center.
We knew right away things would only get better.
We saw the flags flying, with bright colors blazing.
Are we here? Is it true? It feels so amazing!
One hundred ninety delegates from fifty world nations
Had all come to Kenya with high expectations.
On buses and airplanes and taxis we traveled.
All arrived safely, if a little bit frazzled.
Barine, Wambura, Isaac, Mary, and Rose,
Vincent, Joram, and Esther were all on their toes.
The planning committee had met once and then twice
To make sure that all LittWorld details would be nice.
The check-in went on as smooth as could be
As the College Church volunteers gave us our keys.
Our great support staff counted the cost.
Thank you to Bonnie and Debbie and Elizabeth and
Howard and Laurie Costley and Wil and
Lorraine Triggs and Natalie Maust!
From Africa, Europe, and Asia we came.
To know more about publishing: that was our aim.
When up on the platform arose a great speaker,
All sat up in our chairs with hearts that were eager.
Daily we came to Clark chapel in awe
To hear the next speaker give wisdom to all.
Hardly had drowsiness begun to set in
When a bird . . . look, a bird . . . there’s the bird!
The meals were made in the Brackenhurst kitchen
With banquets for kings at breakfast, noon, and dinner.
But beware lest you take your eyes off your plate
For it will be gone, no matter how little you ate.
Morning by morning, led by Pastor Soo Inn Tan,
We were moved and inspired, as only God’s Word can.
We learned about friendship; we sought God in prayer,
And all who rose early were glad to be there.
The staff were terrific from Good News Productions,
Creating their videos of plenary functions.
But Isaac and Anastasia—their mischief is complete:
They’re scanning the crowd for those fast asleep!
Les Francophones montraient une patience incroyable.
The French-speaking people were incredibly patient.
Quelle joie de traduire, ecoute tout deux fois!
What a joy is translation: hearing everything twice!
On Wednesday we set out in buses one through nine.
“Two hours,” we were told, “we’ll be there in no time.”
Over hills and savannah, we drove with great care.
A hundred and ninety people from fifty countries all packed
into tiny buses for seven hours only to walk for miles
through the African bush looking for giraffes
that weren’t even there!
We came back so late, wondering about LittWorld’s Got Talent.
“Go to bed,” Nicholas said, with no further comment.
But the next day he said the program was saved.
“We’ll all stay up late. Sing a song, read a poem, be brave.”
And now here we are: ’Tis indeed the last night.
Our gratitude is soaring, and surely this is right.
Please, learn this lesson before you are old:
Like the peasant from Halenko, go home to your gold.
With hands joined in a circle, and tears all around,
We sing, “Bind us together,” and our hearts are bound.
Then we hear John exclaim, with a smile and a gleam,
“Happy LittWorld to all . . . see you in twenty fifteen!”