13.11.2015 Feature Article

Rhythms of the Returnee

Rhythms of the Returnee
13.11.2015 LISTEN

Winter sunshine
Beckons from the east side of my attic abode
From where I look down the virgin veld of my homeland

With nostalgic admiration
My mental gaze echoes the debris of bushfires
Mercilessly ambushing grasshoppers
That would soon fill the watery mouths of my kinsmen

Their bellies; ever unfurl
Meat from the hunters’ knives are eaten with relish

Bones appease dogs
Whose masters yell
With derision
At the backyards of thatched houses
Girls unclothed
Limping like lizards, playfully
Their innocence tinged with hopelessness
I see the chief priest
Flee to unknown lands
The custodian of our heritage
Scorns his own moral amulets
The wave of superficial conquest from the West
Has reached my homeland
And all with youtful semblance
Vanish with the winds
Soon, empty seashells mound the shores
And dry hands
Collect cowries
Worn no more
The clan is but a solitude
Our ancestral virtues gone amiss
And the basket of our folklore wretched
Our heroic vestiges soon forgotten
Rhythms of loneliness
Are the beats of mama’s xylophone
A plea for restoration
Is the song on her lip
Will I join the chorus?
My voice finds the wind
And a note of harmony
Fills emptiness
Restoration is born anew
And girls in graceful adornments join the ensembles

We the returnee kinsmen
Are mending with vow; the torn rafters of mama's roofs!

Adama Bukari
Somewhere in Europe

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