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Omololá Ijeoma Ògúnyemí - Whispers

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(dedicated to Kamau Brathwaite)

They say hurricanes begin in Africa
Have you ever heard the sigh of bones
Lining the ocean floor?
Listen carefully
And you'll come to know
That soft green sound
Like elephant grass whispering
Day after day those whispers
Warp minds in the East
Keep iron-fisted rulers
Deaf to their people's pleas
And each year
Those whispers become a deafening roar
Pent up fury of souls undead
Rejecting the whip
Breaking the chains
Seeking justice once more
Their anger pushes West
And when they are done
They return East
To whisper some more

They say hurricanes begin in Africa

-Omololá Ijeoma Ògúnyemí