Presidential Griot

By Mbizo CHIRASHA, World BEYOND War, July 2, 2020


Sometimes memories smell like a dictator’s fart
We once jived to our own shadows under the silver moon and our shadows danced along with us, we rhymed to the nightmares of hyenas and hallucinations of black owls. Our desires sailed along with gowns of fog back and forth at village dawns. Wood smoke smelt like fresh baked bread. Time bewitched us, we ate William Shakespeare and John Donne. We drank lemon jugs of Langston Hughes and Maya Angelou.
Soyinka’s lyrical whisky wrecked our tender nerves.
We bedded politics with boyish demeanor and dreamt of the black cockerels and black Hitler’s
Sometimes time is stubborn like a sitting tyrant
Last night, commissars chanted a slogan and you baked a dictator’s poetry sanguage. Zealots sang Castro and Stalin and you brewed a socialist crank, the president is a stinking capitalist. I never said he is Satanist. Back to village nights, hyenas are laughing still, black owls gossiping, silver moon dancing still over rain beaten paths of our country dawns.

Sometimes time stinks like a dictator’s fart
Your lyrical satire sneaked imbeciles through back doors. Your praise sonnets recycled suicidal devils and polished revolutionary rejects
Back then, smells of fresh dung and scent of fresh udder milk were our morning brew and under the twilight the moon once disappeared into the earthly womb, Judas, the sun then took over and every dictator is an Iscariot.
I never said we are now vagabonds

Sometimes time smells like a dying autocrat
Mwedzi wagara ndira uyo tigo tigo ndira – the moon was once sour milk silver white and fresh from the Gods’ mouth and sat on its presidential throne on the zenith of bald headed hills and later with time the moon was ripe to go mwedzi waora ndira tigo tigo ndira
Sometimes wind gusts whistled their tenor through elephant grass pastures, we sang along the obedient flora Chamupupuri icho…oo chamupupuri chaenda chamupupuri chadzoka Chamupupuri icho…oo!

Our poverty marinated , yellow maize teeth grinned to sudden glows of lightening, the earth gyrated under the grip of thunder, then Gods wept and we drank teardrops with a song mvura ngainaye tidye makavu , mvura ngainaye tidye makavu .. Pumpkins bred like rabbits, veldts strutted in Christmas gowns. Wild bees and green bombers sang protest and praise. I never said we are children of drought relief.

Sometimes time grows old like a sitting tyrant,
Tonight the echo of your praise poetry irk the anopheles stranded in tired city gutters to swig the bitter blood of ghetto dwellers, gutter citizens eking hard survival from hard earth of a hard country , their rough hands marked with scars of the August Armageddon , their sandy hearts are rigged ballot boxes stuffed with corruption, they waited and sang for so long.
Chamupupuri icho…oo chamupupuri chaenda
chamupupuri icho…oo chamupupuri chadzoka
Chamupupuri icho..oo

2 Responses

  1. WorldBeyondWar leadership , peacemakers and Comrade Brother Leader David Swanson, Thank you for understanding the value of poetry in unlocking change , in bringing an awakening , driving peace revolutions and in peace building. PRESIDENTIAL GRIOT my poem is featured on WorldBeyondWar Homepage . I cherish this humble but greater gesture , Aluta Continua,

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