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Faces&Voices


AN ANTHOLOGY
OF VERSE, PROSE

AND ART

by
the Composition
for Honours Class,
Howard University,
2001-200
2

  Contents
  Authors & Artists
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E. R. BRAITHWAITE
Professor

Faces & Voices 4
Faces & Voices 5



The Song of Freedom
Karen Norman
Trinidad & Tobago - Marketing

Percussion……….
I feel the beat of an African drum.
It is nostalgic,
An emotional séance,
Reminding me of home.
It is the rhythm of freedom,
Cast to the wind.
It falls unto deaf ears,
Unto ears that choose not to listen.

Hands beat down in gentle percussion,
Dissipating the silence.
The sound shackles my heart,
Arousing discomforting images
Of shanty town houses
And faecal filled latrines.
This is the emotional upheaval of the rhythm.
So I genuflect,
And close my eyes to absolve my spirit,
My frame of mind,
My psyche,
Me.
Feelings are unearthed
But it is a premonition
Of myriad rapes
And hungry souls
Lamenting for freedom.

Wind………..
I cannot see it
But I know of its existence.
It carries the notes of freedom.
But there is a dissonance,
Of demons howling in my head.
And so I run,
Quickly,
Like an allegro,
Amidst the whistling of the cane,
Against the wind,
Against the haunting echoes of my past.

I cry out in the darkness,
Asking God to intercede in my Crucifixion
But my speech is incoherent,
Discordant to the ear,
Suffocated by my tears.
Blow wind blow,
Comb through the knots in my hair.
Cool this naked body,
That has been charred by the fire of social depravity.
Listen,
Hear the orchestrated sounds of the elements.
Hear the wind as it trebles the sound of freedom.

Words………….
I hear the verse of my Ancestors,
Intermittently,
Crying out for Succor.
Intermittently,
Transposing the wailing of the dead into song.
And so I listen.
I listen to the crescendo.
It is like a distant scream,
That builds with every step,
Until it reaches its climax.
It is subtle,
Like unspoken words – Sotto voce,
The Silent Chorus,
Where mouths move to mimic speech
But the tongue says nothing.

I feel the beat,
I embrace the wind
And I hear the song of my spirit mother,
Leading me home…………...
Si ya hamb’e ku kha nyeni kwen kos
Si ya hamb’e ku kha nyeni kwen kos
We are marching in the light of God.


© 2002 Howard University
(First Published in limited print edition, An Anthology of Verse, Prose & Art, by the Composition for Honours Class, Howard University, Spring 2002. Professor E.R. Braithwaite)
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