Posts Tagged ‘revolution’

We stand in historic times. All religious scrolls will most likely have some record of the Pharaonic era of the Egyptians. Now in our time, we witness the fall of the last.

Egyptians have put their ailing former head of state in court and are prosecuting away. Since his health fails him, he is brought in his hospital bed and kept in a cage while proceedings continue. That may sound cruel but for a country bent on making a transition to democracy, this may be the gesture that states their uncompromising stand of not returning to the past anymore.

The last Pharaoh

The last Pharaoh


There have been notable Pharaohs without whom Egyptian lore will not have been as attractive. There may not have been the Sphinx and Pyramids. Talk of Ramses and the days of the Pharaonic conquest into West Asia, his father Seti who had started that expansion, talk of Tutankhamen the boy king and his father-in-law, Akhenaton who himself preached a single universal god (the sun god), banning all other religions in the dynasty, Amenhotep who was Akhenaton’s father, the list goes on. It is in this same era that beautiful maidens who have charmed literature such as Nefertiti the wife of Akhenaton, and Cleopatra also were named. Today, we witness the end of their reign.
Let me write Mubarak a poem. He deserves it.

THE END OF AN AGE

Final on this bulwark propping
A stone hewn from a broken stone.
The cisterns of the gone men broken
And the courts of Thebes do moan,
Pity Alexandria, pity Cairo,
pity the hard dark face of the Rosetta stone.
Men,
trudging per foot,
with revolution in heart, with liberation in hand,
men set aflame by the burning of one man,
Men!! Sons of the Nile-dwellers,
the sun-worshippers, the waist wrigglers and the snake-charmers
Many manner of men!!
Men of the Ancient conquests,
and the hieroglyphics.
Men of the Sphinx, the mighty man-lions!
Men of the Pyramids, the godless tetrahedrons!
Mubarak, you away, that stone.
Tell your fathers before that we have come home.
We the sons of the land.
And we no more shall heed the oppression of their single arm
The blood of Egypt boiling,
boiling hot in our heads
has sent you tumbling down.
If we had met them all, sorry their story.
But we send you, an emissary…
A pot-load of Grecian misery.
To tell them we have come home.
Owners of our forgotten destiny.

I will not review this poem now. I hope Egypt will find it a worthy letter to be sent to the Pharaohs gone by. I send it to them.

Egyptian Revolution

Egyptian Revolution

It’s been a few weeks here. I have gone across half of Ghana in that time and been at a couple of events too. The latest of them was a visit to Citi 97.3 FM for programme, Writers Project. I had to read a couple of poems there and it was fun meeting other writers and talking about African poetry. I must say that there are many African poets out there whose works are never seen and so are never appreciated. That should change. And when I was there, the producer of the show, Nana Nyarko who also invited me, made it clearer that there are not many people solely promoting African poetry. That’s the truth and I really hope I can find a lot of people along the way who can join on this journey. It is worth a lifetime’s work.

So, I shall share one poem I read when I was in the studio. It is a tribute to the new breed of Africans born and who are ready and willing to possess their continent and make it their own; children of the continent who are ready to colonise it and own it. So here goes a poem that is my tribute to all the young revolutionaries, many not even older than me, who are shedding blood, sweat and tears for the liberation of their people and the greater freedom of their children yet unborn.

A NEW BREED
We are of a new breed
such seed as has never trespassed
this land
We are of them that sail
the seas
that sail and assail the sun
We are of them that own
the horizon
That belong to the sky
And that touch heaven
We are of them that say no to stifling
Yes to freedom
We are the Hakeems of Egypt
The Bouazizis of Tunisia
Of the toiling Lateefs of Libya
Our song is different
We seek, we search
We plead, we bleed
We live, We die
for our freedom
We are the breed
that topple the pharaonic
We quit our seat
We drag our feet
Lift our hands to heaven
and rhyme our beats

Yet we march on
to ready tomorrows
For the Hallelujahs of our future selves
the Praise-the-Lords of our yesterdays
and the Amens of the now

We are of the new breed
of Africa
Africa. Afri_Can
Because we can
And we clasp our hands together
from the Nile to the shacks of Soweto
From the sands of the Sahara
to the waters of the Congo
The Masai of Kenya
the Sahel of Mali
the wonder of Uganda
We are a new breed
None before us has existed like us
And we trudge on..
claiming tomorrow
Peering beyond smoking gun barrels
To the tomorrows unseen

We trudge on
A new breed
Undisappointing of our applauding fathers
And on
we trudge!!
A new breed.

Photo Credit flashnewstoday.com

Mercenaries.

Mercenaries.

April is National Poetry Month in the United States. I am not joining the American National Poetry Month Write A Poem A Day Challenge because this blog is sinlessly African only. But I think it is a worthy challenge and writing a poem a day for a month may not be too difficult a thing to do. In place of missing out on the Challenge, I’ll do my best to flow with the spirit of poetry and blog more African poetry this month. Maybe, I should set a personal challenge to update this blog everyday of April. That is quite a Challenge in itself. I have written poetry for the first two days of April already, the first being my April Fool’s Post and then this one written yesterday. Hope you enjoy it somewhat.

LIFE AND DEATH

Life and death.
We trudge on
From one to another.
Mercenaries. Bound.

If only death was life
And life was death,
Then we’ll die first
And live forever

Still we rise..

We breath.
We live.
We live.
We breath.
We sleep.
We wake.
We live.
To die.

Yet we live still…
To die soon…

This poem is actually a response to the epidemic of lost lives the world has seen in only three months of this year. An earthquake in Haiti, floods in Australia, New Zealand and Pakistan, an earthquake and tsunami in Japan, revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Syria, Yemen and other countries across the globe, brutal after-effects of elections in Cote d’Ivoire and bomb explosions in Afghanistan and many other countries. The list is endless. I am sure I have missed something still. But it gives a though to the contemplative: how valuable is life today? We have collectively cheapened the value of life through our misdeeds. But even if we did not, wouldn’t we all die? The poem says it all that life and death are the cycle we all shall experience. We trudge towards death, whether by quake, tsunami or revolution, each day brings us ever close to our graves. Yet we trudge on. I hope it made for thought.