The Poem is a reflection of the fallout of crisis that bedevils a nation it is a protest informed by the devastation of the land and the destruction of the dreams of the people. Things have suddenly turned upside down, but different things are no longer at ease. Moments of joy have suddenly turned into agonizing periods as we can see in the opening lines of the poem: “Dinner tonight comes with gun wounds”. The time for dinner which is supposed to be for relaxation and refreshment is ironically bloody, Instead of their dry tongues to lick refreshing drink, it licks vegetable blood”. “Our desert tongues lick the vegetable blood…”

This assertion may be satirically referring to the loss of the young ones, vegetable blood caused by the negligence of their leaders. Thus, dinner time is no longer pleasurable but full of pain, frustration and suffering and this situation which the people face has become excruciating and biting. It is as painful as the pepper which the poet describes as being strong enough to push scorpions up our heads,

An impression is further created by the poet that even in the midst of plenty, the masses especially children wallow in abject poverty and squalor.

“Guests look into the oceans of howls as vegetables die on their tongues”. Furthermore, the poet creates the impression that the place of habitation has been hijacked by fighters and devourers, hence making little children helpless and speechless having been deprived of everything including a playground for their relaxation.

The table that gathers us is an Island where guerillas walk the land while crocodiles surf.

That is to say, occupation forces fight to destroy and to maim and their victims have no place of peace. Having been deprived of their playgrounds, what purpose will road blocks serve in the circumstance?

When the playground is empty of children’s toys, who needs roadblocks? In other words, when the people have been short changed and their source of survival destroyed by the leaders, of what benefit will roadblocks be to them? In a situation where bad leadership has subjected the people to wallow in anguish, the only alternative is for everyone to take his/her destiny in his/her hand. The persona therefore volunteers to take up the challenge but it seems there are impediments.

“I promise to be a revolutionary, but my Nile, even without tributaries comes easy upon its own nile.

This implies that the speaker is determined to confront this monster through a revolution but himself, the “Nile” – source of hope, even without the help or support – “even without tributaries”, is discouraged by his own people, “…comes lazy upon his own nile”.

While encouraging other freedom fighters, “…lovers of re’ he concludes that his strength is gone and the zeal diminished, “I’m full with the catch of gun wounds, and my boots have suddenly become too reluctant to walk”

Leave a Comment

not allowed!