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Hello People,

Yesterday I posted the first part of the verses written for the late literary icon , Chinua Achebe by Professor Wole Soyinka.  Today’ I’d like us to continue reading from where I stopped

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Late Professor Chinua Achebe

For God, read white, read slaver surrogates

We scaled the ranges of Obudu, prospected

Jos plateau, pilgrims on rock – hills of Idanre

Floated on pontoons from Bussa to silt beds

Of eternal Niger, reclaimed the palmgrove swamps

Startling mudskipper, manatee and mermaids.

Did others claim the mantle of discoverers?

Let them lay patents on ancestral lands, lay claim

To paternity of night and days-ours

Were hands tat always were, hands that pleat

The warp of sunbeam, and the weft of dew

Ours to create the seamless out of paradox

 

 

 

In the mind’s compost, meager scrub yielded

Silos of grain. Walled cities to the north were

Sheaths of gold turbans, tuneful as minarets.

The dust of Durbars, pyrotechnic horsemen

And sparkling lances, all one with the ring of anvils

From Ogun’s land to Ikenga’s.

 

 

Rainbow beads, jigida

From Bida’s furnaces vied across the sky with Iyun glow and Ife Bronzes, Luscent on ivory arches

Of Benin. Legend lured Queen Amina to Moremi

Old scars of strife redeemed in tapestries

Of myth, recreating birthpang and rebirth.

And yes-

 

 

we would steal secrets from the gods.

Let Sango’s axe,

Spark thunderstones on rooftops, we would swing

In hawser hammocks on electric pylons, pulse through cities

In radiant energies, surge from battery racks to bathe

Town and hamlet in alchemical light.Orisa–Oko

Would heal with herbs and scapel.Ogun’s drill

Was poised to plum the earth anew, spraying aloft

Reams of rare alloys. Futurists, were we not

Annunciators? Of the Millennium long before its advent?

In our now autumn days, behold our leaden feet

Fast welded to the starting block

 

 

 

Vain griots! Still we sang the hennaed lips and fingers

Of our gazelle womenfolk, fecund muses tuned

Senghorian cadences. We grew filament eyes

As heads of millet, as flakes of cotton responsive

To brittle breezes, wraith-like in the haze of harmattan

Green of the cornfields of Oyo, ochre of groundnut pyramids

Of Kano, indigo in the ancient dye-pots of Abeokuta

Bronzed in earth’s tonalities as children of one deity

We were the cattle nomads, silent threads through

Forestries and cities, coastland and savannah,

Wafting Maiduguri to the sea, ocean mist to sand dunes

Wole Soyinka

Wole Soyinka

Do keep a date with us. The reading continues tomorrow. Do have a wonderful day ahead!

Cheers

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