A Flake of Rain - L. S. Mensah

I shook off a rain-flake that dropped
On my brow, sliced it clean with a hatchet.
First it sweated a draining silence.
Then I heard a gurgle, or was it a gargle?

It was the sap rising; waking, taking leave of sleep.
It was an asthmatic cloud, out of which coughed
Ancestral dust and ancestral presences.

And I saw the ghosts of my ancestors
Parade by, as if in procession
Their eyes hollowed out
The way a carver of masks
Hollows his wood.

And from those barren eye-holes
They seemed to ask:

Child of Afrikania
What did you do with the treasures we bequeathed?

I asked them what treasures,
But they melted into the sun-dew
As the rain-flake evaporated.
And in the still gargling, gurgling silence
I knew the rain-flake had died
Of a broken heart
For ancestral wishes unfulfilled,
Unfulfilled by me.

4 comments:

Prince Mensah said...

I love the poem. The use of repetitive words is very effective. It has a sacred mood that immediately demands contemplation of who and where we are as Africans. I must add, however, that it contains a universality that is emphereal. Congrats, L.S Mensah.

reggiekyere said...

treasures,huh?they bleed from bullet wounds,stained with blood of innocent people.those you left to leed us have failed.others,that remain:our culture,seems so "white" to some of us.thanks for the poem.

David Shawcroft said...

Splendid poem.

Anonymous said...

Well--as Dylan Thomas said--poetry is a sullen craft--in this poem--reflection--is used as the sharpest tool-the mood creates the art--------------Silverzorro.