Monday, September 28, 2009

Flowers of Africa

A man died in Africa last night,
a proud man in a proud country:
you'll have heard of neither one nor other.
In this world of pain
who or what is Eritrea?

I went to see his daughter today,
felled like a broken bird,
like a flower snapped at the stem,
folded over in pain,
far from home, far from home;
and who or what is Eritrea?

Eritrea, ceaselessly you bleed your children
into the two seas;
the red stain spreads
from the Red Sea land
and is lost, lost in the black depths.

The mothers and the fathers weep back home,
their children sleep, if sleep, all alone,
and we, we keep our hearts of stone:

let them die on the deep sea
or die back home, or over here,
let them die like flies,
the flowers of Africa.

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