Sunday, April 13, 2008

achebe poems

“...Charles’ attitude was undoubtedly the healthiest in these circumstances. If one didn’t laugh, one would have to cry. It seemed that was the way Nigeria was built.”
-Chinua Achebe, No Longer at Ease... indeed, sharru al-baliyyatu ma yudhik! : ( :

...since i’m quoting from Achebe, here are a couple of poems from No Longer at Ease and Anthills of the Savannah, respectively:

We retunred to our places, these Kingdoms,
But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
With an alien people clutching their gods.
I should be glad of another death.
-T.S. Elliot, The Journey of the Magi

Africa tell me Africa
Is this you this back that is bent
This back that breaks under the weight of humiliation
This back trembling with red scars
And saying yes to the whip under the midday sun
But a grave voice answers me
Impetuous son, that tree young and strong
That tree there
In splendid loneliness amidst white faded flowers
That is Africa your Africa
That grows again patiently obstinately
And its fruit gradually acquire
The bitter taste of liberty
-David Diop, Africa

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