The preacher man once told me something.
He said, “It’s one thing for one to feel pain inside,
And it’s another thing for one to dance in pain”.
It is he who takes money to pay the drummers
That will call for the kind of sound to be heard.
But we have not enough to give to the drummers,
Except for our loyalty which we’ve given to the drums.
We survived slavery; we survived colonialism;
We survived disasters; we survived wars;
But we are not sure if we will survive this pain.
The holy books spoke about demons and angels.
I think the owners of this sound are demons
And we, the dancers of this sound are angels.
So we worship these demons in flesh, spirit and in truth.
Their strong sounds have swallowed our tender hearts,
And we can no longer hear a sound from our heartbeats.
The saints taught us how to fight using prayers,
But they never taught us how to pray using fights.
What hurts a madman more than not being able
To dance to sweet songs made for men like himself?
What hurts a dumb man more than not being able
To speak of the silent market in his throat
Filled with ruckus, restlessness, and stagnancy?
This minute, we want war for the pains we’ve had;
The other minute, we unconsciously move to and fro
To the soft sound coming out of their deadly drums.
If only walls could speak, they’d have sent warm warnings
Before we finish dancing to these drumbeats.
But walls do not have voice nor mouth to speak with.
They only have ears, to listen and to hmmm.
Young boys like us who are part of these dancers
Fling our feet to and fro, fearlessly to the soft sound
And let the fire consume us from a second till infinity.
We burn together without feigning flames
The same way lovers of fire do whenever
They get slapped on their chests by big bullets.
Whenever we see ourselves burning without flames,
A part of our heart hits us to find a way to stop burning
Until we die and get swallowed by time and tide.
There is this part of the day that comes after night;
When the eyes in our soul will be widely opened.
And we will see that pain, is never a kind of feeling
Like the pleasure got from listening to good music.
Pain is you, it’s me and it’s us.
We are our own pain.
And that’s why mother said “it is good to know that
Creators can also dance to their own creations”.
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Written by Jacob Temidayo