STARDUST - A tribute poem to Jacinda Ardern 2023


I will bet it is lonely, isolated, after all,

If you are truly leading

You are at the head, apex, foreground

First line of defence

First one in

Last one out

Rising with the sun

Keeping orbit as stardust does

After all

We are a species

Attached to the art of pack

But the composition of a leader

This is for the ones

That occupy solitude, voluntarily

Ask yourself, how is titan is made, born, grown?

Often, I find myself questioning

Just what is the aesthetic, the make, the scent, the gait, the breath,

the sweat, the pulse, the pitch, the width, the length, the depth of a icon?

I never had to query for long

Neither you,

Chances are

They are standing amongst you

Like giants, masquerading as the average height mortal

They weep when sad

They laugh when elated

They think when needing to reflect

They are living in the residue of stardust

I’d say you can almost spot them

If you follow the iridescent trail of galactic matter,

it’s glistens, but only when it catches the light

So, what are the characteristics of a pioneer?

What brings out the hero in the heroine?

How do they act under pressure, under fire, in the flow, walking in purpose?

Could you spot a living Minerva if they entered your presence?

I’d like to think so

I’d like to imagine myself keeping company

amongst Greek Gods, the greats, the historical dreamers

In times of crisis, war, national despair

You will find them often alone.

pouring, scouring, reading, feeling, interpreting, interacting,

The journey of leadership cannot be steeped in the false cries of a rally unhinged.

They look around the atmosphere, be it Parliament, Congress, town hall,

city square, hospital waiting room, congested interstates,

and they observe, breathe deeply, assess, obsess, ingest, and then react.

The road of leadership must be paved while traveling,

repaired whilst breaking, restored whilst being built.

This isn’t for the heartless, the hard edged, the stone milled,

this isn’t for the stealth then Ravenous.

It is for the gracious, and patient.

The duty, the allegiance, the decisive diligence of leadership is for the one unafraid to weep.

For the one that can stand alone and deliver a condolence speech,

with commitment to consider the future of a world yet to be born.

Leading isn’t for the house proud, the one worried sick of public perception.

The leader knows, they may not always be understood,

but they lead so the future may too one day talk lovingly of their past.

This is no easy task.

Not the in the wake of a titanic size pandemic.

Not in the face of parents mourning the loss of their children at the hand of a lack of gun safety.

You show me in the last 150 years

 a time where the darkest of nights

shone its face for weeks, then months, years at a time.

You show me a leader that led for future

of a world that we ought to leave our babies.

You show me a human in history

that thought nothing of her gender

defy gender gravity.

You show me, and while you search for a selfless, empathetic, kind and decisive monarch,

president, king, ruler, prime minister

I’ll kindly point your focus to a woman

that held office

whilst the world held their breath

I’ll show you a leader that didn’t mind being pensive,

as she managed the fate of her nation,

its sovereignty and ecological safety

You show me a country, a town, a province, a street corner

that didn’t mourn the greatest global pause of all time - without derision!

You show me one where ethics, integrity, and compassion

remained the centre of their reign.

You will only one result in return,

the Right Honourable Dame & Former Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Be you follower, be you crowd gathered, be you global citizens,

it is only right to understand when history has been made in front of our very eyes!

This is me asking

begging and pleading with you

To open your eyes

Stretch out your palms wide

Arms above your head

So high - you graze the galaxy widespread

Darlings don’t you understand

that it takes a leader

to lead the village to protect the land

This is the work

This is the moment

when you take the cut poppies,

the lilies the discarded

rose petals aground and make a flora,

a bouquet, you assemble -

In times like these we rally,

we stand, we shield and harness our power

As a forcefield impenetrable

Implacable and fortified

Not for later, now is the time!

Humans, followers, dreamers, leaders, ladies

we are STARDUST.

Unsettled, unrelenting, ubiquitous and when aligned,


Don’t you dare play small, or let your voice drown.

It is time for us to make sure, not another 150 years passes

before your daughters take their rightful place as the galaxies they are.



We are one, one people, one land

One global Nation, and it was, is, and forever will be an honour

to have lived in a time where a Well Behaved

and Intentioned Woman made history.

Matriarch, dynamo, Minerva, Heroine

May your next season, chapter, purpose be aflame

with your grace, your candour, your heart,

and your brain trust. And a thousand thanks for your reminder and example

to never settle and REMAIN as Stardust.

-- ~ Azure Antoinette


The future depends on what you do today 


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