Woodpecker Mourns

This morning I heard Woodpecker sing
She sang melodious songs
in mournful tones
She sang of victories;
The song of a worrier
leaving a battle field
with spear in his right hand
and a shield in the left
The voices of fallen comrades
drowning his chants of praise
then tears streaked his visage
he wept for families lost
beautiful wives
in curvy shapes and sound morals
warmth of children with innocent demeanour
The soldier wept for a future lost
of bodies disfigured
and red rivers
The Woodpecker sang it all
The plight of brave soldiers
whose sacrifices were met with greed
He returned home with nothing
but a spear in the right
and a shield in the left

Like a nightmare in a troubling sleep
home was no more
where his hut once stood
a notice now read:
β€œ PRIVATE PROPERTY. NO TRESSPASS”
The woodpecker sang
Ooh, the bird sang this dawn
the dirges of heroes gone
She sang of Mboya
A great worrier of Joramogi
A worrier of pen and tongue
killed for being too good for the regime
The bird sang of Robert Ouko
A hero slain for being too intelligent
to the heads in crown

The Woodpecker sang some more
these sorrowful songs of dawn
of fireflies lost in thickness of darkness
of trumpets drowned in silence
of night’s vigilant angels
and daylight marauding devils

The bird won’t stop
Now she’s singing of tombs
split open by gods of revenge
the cries of innocent orphans heard
the cursing of the widows
awakened the wrath of Karma
the dead are awake now
coming for their dues
now be quiet the mourning bird
the village awaits the morning bloodbath

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