THE SONG OF THE WOMEN OF MY LAND: A Poem by Oumar Farouk Sesay

Like a sculptor chipping away at bits of wood,
Time chisels away bits of their memory

It strips away lyrics of the song of the women of my land
Leaving only a fading tune echoing the song,
they sang in the forlorn fields
about their lives; songs
of how they ploughed the terrain of their landscape
for memories of lyrics lost in the vast void of time,
in those days when a song beheld their lives;
when servitude cuffed the ankles of their soul,
and dereliction decapitated the epic of their lives.

With a song, they sponged off their anguish,
to behold their collective pain,
to celebrate their gains
give lyrics to the tune of their lives,
cheat the tyranny of time
and commune with the yet unborn
to give meaning to an epoch lost in antiquity,

Yet time strips the lyrics and scars the tune,
leaving a dying song.
Like the woman who died long ago,
Leaving the song to tell the story of their lives.

Today the tune roams the forlorn fields
Like their souls looking for lyrics.
To tell the tale of the servitude
of the women of my land
Who ploughed their soil and soul
For a song to sing the story of their lives
The song of the women of my land
left in the memory of the wind.

Now feeding the verses of poets, it echoes in
Wriggling in rhythms and melodies,
Hollering in distant tunes
In places far afield the forlorn fields,
where the song of their lives died.

The stuttering lips of my pen
And the screeching voice of my rib
try to sing the song of the women of my land
In verses far from the theatre of toil
where they left a song that now roams the land
stripped of lyrics like a scorned ghost.
The tune tuning the tenor of my verse
is all that remains of the song of the women of my land
Who labored and died leaving a dying song.

The dirge of their lives!

— Oumar Farouk Sesay

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  1. Hello, Ridwan!

    Thank you for all you’ve been doing and your analysis of each work of art posted on this blog, they’ve been of great help to my academics.

    However, this poem ‘The Song of the Women of My Land’ has been posted, but I haven’t been able to find either the blog post on its ‘Content Analysis’ or ‘Themes’.

    Kindly help look into this whenever you can, thank you.

    • Its symbolizes the ordeals that clouds the poem in words like “unfading tunes” “stuttering lips” and “wriggling rhythms”.

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