ABIKU

Announce to the market
of familiar strangers
O’birth crier!
Inform them in the city of the under-sun

Chalk the name of our visitor
on the cheek of Life. Quickly!
Remember, he is wayfarer

Drag the gold shielded ram
to the market place
sound the gong of announcement
let our feet grope the shameful sand
Abiku – don’t go today!

Chant lullabies that shame dirges
When night falls
Abiku – don’t run with the wind!

Don’t render mother fruitless
Don’t shame the blissful night of lust.
Don’t spill cowries of tears
on the forsaken granite of false incantations
Abiku, don’t go today

Hmmm!
There is a rumour of your laziness
lingering in the fainting air

So you are afraid of the chores
that firstborns do!
From the river to the kitchen

Afternoon sun unfavourable
Night Chill: cold haunts your dreams
Abiku, the sounded gong
that cheers your birth
is still heard miles away. Why depart?

Abiku, mother ages quickly.
Father’s back no longer hoes a plot
Don’t go tortoise kid

So should we tile your cheek
with tribals that signify your return
after your departure?

Abiku, don’t go again
Don’t go today
Have mercy…

Written by: Adedayo Adeyemi Agarau
Edited by: Kukogho Iruesiri Samson

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