Last night I dreamt of Grandfather Okara, hunter of words carrying a clay pot seething with fermented poetic froth, African metaphors and proverbs of our anthills-. He shook hands with Dennis Brutus and Jack Mapanje as the pot gyrated above his head. Unfortunately something was missing i didn’t see any grandmother of African Verse. I jumped from the dream before i drink from the Honey Poet brimming to fullest with the Verses from our Anthills- Piano and Drums.
Verses from his Piano and Drums
When at break of day at a riverside
I hear the jungle drums telegraphing
the mystic rhythm, urgent, raw
like bleeding flesh, speaking of
primal youth and the beginning
I see the panther ready to pounce
the leopard snarling about to leap
and the hunters crouch with spears poised;
Then I hear a wailing piano
solo speaking of complex ways in
of faraway lands
and new horizons with
coaxing diminuendo, counterpoint,
crescendo. But lost in the labyrinth
of its complexities, it ends in the middle
of a phrase at a dagger point.
Okara left a nourishing and flourishing creative stream for young readers to quench their metaphoric thirstiness and to satisfy their insatiable addiction of creative dope . He sang of the realities and complexities of African societies their socio-cultural, revolutionary ideologies and cosmetic freedoms.
Poets and griots are teachers and prophets of their people; they should speak of the liberties, the freedoms, the doom and their realities of societies.