To my ancestor poet

TO MY ANCESTOR POETS

Tchicaya is gone

With his crutches

Leaving me in a dither…

Okigbo is gone

With his uncertainties

And the thunder claps of munitions

And his metallic gongs of war…

Rabearivelo is gone

Drenched in infatuations

Playing in casinos

Of the netherwelt…

Diop is gone

With a voice of iron

With a voice of violence

Mellifluous with force…

Damas is gone

With a humorous tongue

With a surreptitious vision

And the Malaysian spear…

Sengor is gone

The negritudinal precursor

And diplomatic poet with heightened oratorio

Of global standard of great poets

With prolific lores of great poems…

Cesaire is gone

with the surrealist condensed verbs

With the command of tongue as herald

To lead with putsch the race to the native land

Oh great poet of history…

I wear the night

Gleaming like the ebony

In this effigy of dreams…

                                    20 March 2004