Poem: “Murders” by Leopold Sédar Senghor

Murders by Leopold Sédar Senghor

They are lying there along the captured roads, along the roads of disaster
Slender poplars, statues of the sombre gods wrapped in long golden cloaks
The prisoners from Senegal lie like lengthened shadows across the soil of France.

In vain they have chopped down your laughter, and the darker flower of your flesh
You are the flower of the foremost beauty in stark absence of flowers
Black flower and solemn smile, diamond time out of mind.
You are the clay and the plasma of the world's virid spring
Flesh you are of the first couple, the fertile belly, milk and sperm
You are the sacred fecundity of the bright paradise gardens

And the incoercible forest, victor over fire and thunder.
The immense song of your blood will conquer machines and mortars
The pulse of your speech, lies and sophistry
No hate your heart without hate, no guile your heart without guile.
Black Martyrs O undying race, give me leave to say the words which will forgive.

Leopold Sédar Senghor

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