Is it true
You have refused the stew of this world
That you have accustomed
To the fare of the ancestors?
Is it true they have lacked for the zest
And that why they fetched you into their silent halls?
The inhabitants of that endless plain
Lure you away with the sweeter taste
Of the wine from their palms’ fount?
Did they call you to hunt in the forest
Where games gambol uninhibited
Thoughtless of the instruments of mortality?
You sleep the deep sleep
Under a mound and
Have refused to rise
Have you netted in the heavenly Niger
That mother of all rivers
Àrògìdìgbà, the mighty crocodile?
For we call
And you have not answered
And we wail
Yet you will not be awake
And there in grandfather’s laughter
The broken mirth of your abrupt escape
As also in grandmother’s embrace
The gaping space yawning for your frame
I sniff at your clothes
Wanting to catch in their folds
The whiff of your soul
It is true then what they say:
Those that must go will not delay.