Treasure Island

Babatunde Idowu Ebenezer


The Distance Wailing


I heard it from afar,
The beating of the konga with its deafening melody.
I saw it from a distance,
The burning of the fire with its blinding smoke.


I heard them from afar,
The screaming of innocent dying children.
I saw them from the distance,
The falling figures of murdered defenceless women.


The lyrics of their dirge deafening my ears,
The melody of their dying song haunts my dreams.
Their ceaseless wailing brings tears to my cheeks.
The aroma of their burning meat nauseates my bowels.


The streets are full of their charred bodies,
The gutters are full of their flowing blood.
The cloud above gets thicker with their smokes.
Soon it would rain of vultures.


I can hear from distance the wailing of mother Africa,
Crying for the slaying of her children,
And would not be comforted,
For they are no more.


From Jos to Maiduguri to Kano,
Their restless spirits roam the forests.
From Kaduna to Suleja to Aluu,
Their undead souls wander the streets in darkness.


I listened and screamed,
I beheld and cried along with mother Africa,
And would not be comforted,
For they are no more.


Day upon day they fall,
Their throats slashed with daggers,
Their wombs opened with carving knives,
Their heads rolling in painful Azonto.


Men in their primes,
Women with seeds embedded,
Children in their springs.
Innocent, defenceless, unaware and dead.


The people mourn them,
The power that be turned their ordeal to politics.
The perpetrators claim responsibilities.
Then silence!


The daggers are resharpened,
The guns are reloaded,
More bombs are made,
And the wailing continues.


Competing with the sound of thunder,
Splashing like the sound of rain on iron roof,
Deafening, heart shattering and maddening.
The distance wailing.

Submitted: Sunday, July 28, 2013
Edited: Sunday, July 28, 2013

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