Sunday, 15 May 2011

I Have a Dream: Lorot's Version


I have always been inspired by Martin Luther King Jnr. Especially his “I Have a Dream Speech”. Whereas I apologize for dragging my ten-pence piece in a speech that has outlived him, my dear reader, please accept this amateurish attempt.



I, Lorot Son of the Hills, have a dream
I have a dream...I have a dream
I have a dream that one day
The long night of buried dreams
Would usher in a new dawn of revived dreams

I have a dream that one day
Intellectual fraud would end
And society would be made simpler
By Truth and love for humanity


I have a dream that one day
On the plains of Kacheliba, on the rocky terrains of
Kiwawa and Kasei and the treacherous gullies of Mtembur
On the lakeshores of Lake Victoria to the Tana Wetlands
To the dry patches of Marsabit and Wajir and El-wak
I have a dream that one day
Like the rain, all the people of Kenya
Would be drizzled by the cooling drops of National Cake

I have a dream that one day
When I go to Government offices
I would not be judged by the tatters of my cloth
But by the even fabric of my heart

I have a dream that one day
Leaders would be chosen
Not by the fatness of their bank accounts
Nor by the bellicose they spew forth
Nor by the imaginary enemies they fight
But by their Idea-o-meter
And the pulse of their dreams

I have a dream
I have a dream that one day
Gaza Strip, West Bank, Lebanon
Would be mentioned for right reasons
Like the buzz site of bees
Or some cultural heritage sites
Or some serious exporters of peace

I have a dream
That one day I won’t see smoke
Clogging my nostrils
That I can smell again of nectar

And of earth
I have a dream that these words
Would have a life of their own
Ringing true from the unwashed face
Of a sleepless woman in Alale
To the creased face of a teen
In New York
To the turbaned head of an Afghan boy
To the weary brows of an oil rig worker
To the uncertain eyes of a child in Africa
To the abandoned brides on aisles
To the sunken ships, to the mangled buses,
To the crashed planes, to failed rockets
To the unknown soul
Speaking of his misery
Giving him hope
Re-telling his life

I have a dream
I have a dream that this dream
Would be part of the bigger dream
Of each one of us
In this wonderful world


C) Lorot Salem 2011

6 comments:

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Salem, this is one of the most beautiful of your poems. Truly, it is. I so love it: the dreams, the flow of the beautiful place-names, the longing for peace and humanity, the leaders chosen not by "the fatness of their bank accounts" (a world-wide problem, my friend. But Barak Obama showed that when a truly great leader appears, they ignite the hearts of the people). I love the next-to-last stanza, which names all the peoples everywhere, who all dream these same dreams, and the last lines, part of the bigger dream of each one of us. Salem, you are on fire! Your soul is bubbling over - you inspire me! In fact: maybe YOU will be the Barak Obama of your people! Why not????????????? Tororot has a bigger dream for you than you have for yourself. Trust me, I know these things!

madhumakhi said...

Oh Salem! This is beautiful. Even i wish the dawn of relieved dreams would rise soon. I could relate to your poem very well, especially the bit about politicians and disputed land areas.
In India, corruption is rampant and it's all because of our politicians and caste politics. Even we are facing the problem of Kashmir, which is a disputed area between India and Pakistan. There are many beggars and many young children who can't afford their next meal. Life looks bleak many times.
I love your description of your country too. I can sense your great longing for rain. May it rain in Kenya and may the crops grow green and healthy.

Salem Lorot said...

@ Sherry Blue Sky, first sorry for taking long to reply. Now, how does one say thank you for such a compliment? All I can say, Koko, is that I don't take it for granted. Let us keep hoping and trusting in Tororot. He knows all our graphs. He is the Master of the Cartesian Plane. And for me, I am just but a dot in his Y axis and X axis.

@ Madhumakhi, My apologies for delay in response. Thank you for your input. I think our stories are shared. This is the beautiful thing about poetry. I have been reading and hearing about Kashmir and it is a whole new experience when I hear you say it because it is almost as if I am hearing it face to face. Well, about drought...it is a problem here in Kenya in most parts particularly in some areas like Pokot North ( where I come from), Marsabit and Turkana. Thank you for your prayers and as always I appreciate your comments.

Promising Poets Parking Lot said...

rich thoughts,
what a sweet thrill to have you inspired by M. L. K.

bless you.
keep dreaming.

come to poets rally if you can.

Mary said...

Salem, I share you dream. (I am following your blog, but not through that 'connect' link as I don't want to connect with FB, etc. But your blog is in my "Reader" and I will visit it when I see something new posted! I enjoy your work.)

Salem Lorot said...

@ Promising Poets Parking Lot, thank you so much. The Poets Rally is always an opportunity that I love to pounce on. :)

@ Mary, thank you so much. It gives me pleasure to hear from you and this is also mutual. I am humbled.

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