[Listen] Screams from Sambisa Forest

Chibok-girls

It’s been 212 days! The Chibok schoolgirls are still in captivity. But many only remember this fact like a nightmare that has passed; like a headache bothering someone else and is better imagined than experienced firsthand.

Well, this is one of the little things I can do on my part so we don’t forget.

Listen to Screams from Sambisa Forest:

Click continue to read the poem

Screams from Sambisa Forest

When you jar awake on your soft bed tonight

It is our screams from Sambisa* Forest

Travelling over the mountains in flight

Like a bird that finds no nest

 

When that nightmare lays

Its dreamy hands on your soul

Its horror, a peaceful rest allays

Spare me a thought tonight, please

Your fleeting dream, is my life’s troll

 

Hear me, day by day,

I’m bruised by calloused hands

Night by night, I say

My tender petals crumple in pangs

On the cold bare grounds

Where I’m slaughtered everyday

I’ve looked the Kalashnikov in the eye

Praying

Begging its spit to switch off my light

Pleading for a respite

But like you, dear Rescue

The Reaper leaves my lamp dimly on

 

Four beasts have come today

A fifth joins the fray

Their faces melting into my battered memory

Aside laid his gun

Ready for the slaughter with a La illaha illa lah

His pant goes down, what comes now

I know well

The pain I have ceased to feel

Mixes with Shekau’s* derisive laugh

‘You can faint again, wake up when I’m done’ said he

My tormentor

Master

My owner

 

I still dream, yes, dreams

That my screams like a pigeon

Will fly away as my feeble hope dims

And back again

With a bag full of miracles

Among these

A golden egg named Freedom

 

But I scream, I scream

And I dream

Each time, each night, one pigeon

Lost in the lucidity of my nightmare

That I, among familiar tender faces

Robbed forever of our innocence

Will put a knife to hope’s neck

And bid it

Goodbye

Like our dear Chibok* and all we hold dear

 

*Sambisa is a forest reserve area in northern Nigeria where more than 250 schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram insurgents in April are believed to be held captive.

*Abubakar Shekau is the name of the leader of Boko Haram

*Chibok is a village in northern Nigeria where the schoolgirls were abducted in their domitories

 

 

 

 

 

 

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