Friday, 18 November 2011

Who Am I, You Ask?

“The question “Tell me about yourself” is one of the most difficult questions I can answer. I have the playful bit within me and the sombre one. I would desist from telling you what I do for a living or the high ideals. So in defining me, I will tell you about the attachment I have to carefully spun words or the creased look I saw yesterday at the bus-stage. The challenge I have is to solemnize the marriage between those seemingly contradictory personalities. Or may be to stick to the whims of my soul.”
-Lorot Son of the Hills (18/11/2011 4.26 p.m )


Image supplied by Poets United

Who am I, you ask?
I am the comma in your sentence—
A pause in your thoughts
To be processed in your moment of reflection
I am that germ of idea that clings on your mind
Pleading to you to follow the higher cause
I am your breath floating in the air
The breath that is muted in silence
Of the refugee in a camp, the shackled prisoner
Of thoughts censored, the ebbing voice of a child
Who inherits the debts of the world at infancy,
The silent whisper of disinherited woman
Kicked out of the matrimonial home
I am an “Old Soul” trapped in a young body
My soul dwells with its kindred, feasting on
The Wisdom revealed by them
I am a pilgrim upon these sacred hills
From this vantage position looking at mankind
To write their memoirs for they don’t have the time
I am a flood of ideas sweeping across nations
I might not be able to fulfil them all
So I scatter them around human souls
I am a pastoralist boy learning the ways of the city
Many times I miss the goats and the cows
I miss the smell of cow-dung, I miss sitting in a smoky hut
I am the words you don’t find in books
They are the wisdom of the streets
Like how to duck in blind alleys or how to skip muddy puddles
I am that irritating sound of a man biting pepper
Increasing your appetite in eating this life’s knowledge
I am the psalmist, the quiet psalmist with the broken harp
Singing to this world, singing hope to this world
I am the recollections of life
(That song was a hit back in the days, that was in 1940!)
I am the drumbeat sounding from far villages
Dum dum, I sound, the ignored crier with an important message
I am the elephant, I am the hare, I am both
I am the ogre in your fable; I am the silly warthog in your narrative
I am that confusing legal provision from your attorney
I hide my meaning in notwithstandings and whereases and wheretofores
I am the angry howl of a conductor, the funny bumper sticker
I am the jutting neck muscle of an angry protester
With a placard turned up-side-down
Who am I, you ask?
I am a whole two decades of a sojourner
I taste this life with a teaspoon
I leave mugs to my seniors
I am that nudging thought buried deep inside you
I am the torn page in your book
Pilgrim, how do you tear a book?
I am the hardtalk of Atwoli, the soothing sermon of Joel Osteen,
The engaging tone of a sports commentator, the funny comment of a street cobbler,
The honesty of a mama mboga, the firebrand voice of a condemned man,
The cry of an IDP, the soaring hope of a refugee;
I am a simple soul in a fleeting world, churning out poetry
I am you, I am the universe, I am me—Lorot Son of the Hills.

Shared with Poets United in The Thursday Think Tank # 57 You and Yourself (I...)

I had fun with this. Thanks Poets United.


Ellasedge said...

Amazing, so filled with sentiment and grace! I loved it; so beautiful and sad~ WE all are one! Bravo~

Sherry Blue Sky said...

OH! MY! GOD! This is FANTASTIC!!!!! WOW! So many many wonderful lines and images.......I love all the people and creatures you list, who are a part of you, as they are part of all of us.......I am especially moved by "the child who inherits the debts of the world in infancy." Powerful and, sadly, true. Love the "quiet psalmist with the broken harp, singing to this world, singing hope to this world". Yes, you are an Old Soul, a sojourner, a pilgrim - and a shining light who inspires! Absolutely stunning writing, which speaks such wonderful truths.

Raining Iguanas said...

You are.
Much more.

Salem, your poem was a true work of (t) he art.

theunknowngnome said...

And heretofore unknown!

Pure eloquence Salem!

zongrik said...

great imagery

echoesofthehills said...

Thanks a lot Zongrik.

echoesofthehills said...

And you are also invited here once more. The echoes never die here.

echoesofthehills said...

As always, @theunknowngnome, I really appreciate. :)

echoesofthehills said...

Thanks @Raining Iguanas. You have no idea how much I appreciate your kind comments.

echoesofthehills said...

Thanks a lot, Koko. It is a sad state of affairs in certain things. I really appreciate your incisive comment. :)

echoesofthehills said...

You are my inspiration. So you can imagine how my heart feels like to read your kind comments. Thanks a lot. :)

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