When They Fought for Free-doom!


Darkness is here again!

Let us end this cloak-and-dagger talk.

“Yes, they were shot point-blank.”


Embers are red. Summer was bad.

We grew some maize.

Let’s quickly finish our meal

(A roasted corn cob and a

bowl of thin black tea.)


Silence. Darkness.

We should not be talking now.

Our walls grow ears in the dark.


Tonight is unbelievably silent

except for the buzzing mosquitoes –

Bloody opportunists! –

waiting for a killing suck.


Darkness brought them

as it brings our enemies to our fields

and the silence shall not last for long.

What shall we do?

Our soil is failing us

our spirit is turning brittle.


It was no good. Those speeches made

and the meetings attended.

Those cutlasses sharpened and

the sound and the fury raised.


We believed we were

fighting for a cause.

All bastions of freedom

How do you say that? Free-doom?


It is all over now.

We had our free-doom –

Absolutely free

when we were happily

dispossessed, disowned.


Tonight we live in silence

and obedience.

We have stopped talking.

We have learnt to live and

partly live.


There is a curfew tonight.

I look through the peephole

into the darkness.

Those black guards with their guns

slung over their shoulders

are working our fields with bullets.


This night, sung by mosquitoes,

drummed by bullets –

do I hear the thunder?

It’s going to rain again.

Embers are long dead.

The night is soot-dark,

celebrated by mosquitoes

gunshots and the rain.


Oh Lord! Have mercy on

all who shall appear to thee tonight,

for tomorrow we shall attend their funeral.



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