Categories
Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Nostalgia: Traveling memories

I remember my first attempt at hunting. I was a little boy then and just arrived my hometown for holidays. It was fun and I was glad I went home. As a town boy I had little experience in hunting and general country life. Traveling home was a great way to get in touch with my culture and loved ones. My granny lived in the countryside. I was always excited to see her, she was the reason I went home then. She was kind, generous and thoughtful of others. She always spared me some fish from her food basket. I was her boy and always sit looking at her pretty face each time she made dinner. The memories of her soup still make me salivate. How I miss those days. I wish I could pen down the exact feelings but it can’t be expressed in that manner. It can only be felt. True happiness grow from simple and funny things.

School holidays was an opportunity for traveling. I enjoyed every bit of it. The excitement to pack, to watch the clouds ride past, to eat my hometown’s egusi biscuits, to play with many kids and dream of killing a lion in the forest was enough to drive me home. I always fantasized, I always imagined. I dreamed too. This must be the origin of my love for traveling. Most times we traveled through rail and other times by road. The roads then were much better and I love the feel of fresh wind against my face. I really loved traveling with my aunt to stay with granny (God rest their beautiful souls).

I remember hunting with my playmates. We could hunt, swim, fish, dance, play games, farm and climb trees. We even played in the rain. We hunted anything available, lizards, rats, flies, bugs, grasshoppers and ants. I as a person, had a soft spot for living things. I could collect and study them. As a kid I couldn’t keep my captive pets alive because they won’t eat the food I offered them. Well, I cried each time I lost an insect. My parents thought I would become a medical doctor, but I wasn’t destined for that. My curiosity was something else. I wasn’t good in fixing inanimate objects (fans and TeeVee sets) like my elder brothers but I was more interested in life itself.

There were stories told by my aunt and granny. I also learned of Biafra from old veterans. Most of my friends were the elderly. While I loved hanging out with them I learned a lot from their stories. I imagined life in the time of no civilization. My aunt was my favourite story teller. She acquainted me with tricks of Nnabe, the cunny Tortoise. She even told me I was the reincarnation of her father and wished I met him and I wish I did too. He was a great man indeed. He farmed great expanses of land and had big yam barns, diji, he was also a great hunter, dinta, he was stubborn and courageous. I learned he fought in Hitler’s War in Libya and modern day Israel. My mom still retells her favourite story of how he beat up a racist who always intimidated black soldiers. It’s a good laugh. Maybe I will tell it some day.

I remember with joy, how fast things go by, how I miss those good nomad days and how life has changed. But beautiful memories still flood my mind. I’m grateful to have them.

Categories
Poetry

The Forest’s rhyme

Even before mists and dews evaporate
The green forest was awake, tending to her residents
But the cold iron snake will have none of her benevolence

Categories
Africa

Three Poems: The Waterfalls, Peace and Your Love

The Waterfalls:
I tell the trees of your sounds and they are jealous
When you fall, birds and the wild stop to listen,
To hear Nature sing while she wash her garment in your mist

Peace:
Bird songs, butterflies, sun rays and peace,
All are fruits from the green forest,
Nature’s providence to mankind

Your Love:
Your Love has taken over me
Now I come to You with nothing,
For with You I become everything!

Categories
Nature Uncategorized

Just by the Countryside

wpid-cameroon_rainforest_2.jpg

Just by the countryside…

Where only fields of green stay

And where the mud mix with the clay

Live the blue Clouds that smiled always

And everything  here had something to say

The trees tower over the fine little huts,

Where the green forest sit upon the hills,

With her inhabitants living with a firm will

Across the strings of hills and valleys

With the forest giving all something to feel

When we had the mornings…

We had dew fresh like the silk

And the buffaloes supply us milk,

There is a blue wide wild lake

Which gave the forest dwellers drink

The streams are clean, flowing eastwards

And a multitude of birds flew the skies

Banging their fair talons into the sky

Making a view for the bamboo trees which stood high

And dancing to the tunes of the waterfalls when she sigh

The noon blossom under the hot sun

Yes, the heat is not so hospitable, not so mild

But the birds still soared up the clouds

The women still had millet to pound

And men with their dogs hunt the hog

When the strength of the sun go faint

The men will gather at the inn for beer

The girls make the soup a little warmer

And prepare for a happy family dinner,

Stray songs of children make the evening milder

The Nights are not easy though

She tells of many long beautiful tales,

About the strange duck sitting by the well

Or the Old granny who sit to tell the tale

Of the giraffe which tried to make a sail

Across the big wide taunting Ocean

And how the Giraffe sank without a trace

The nights seem like a miniature race

Everyone hustle down with great haste

To the Oak tree where awaits an evening rest

Categories
Uncategorized

Rainmakers’ tales: 2 tales of Oke- Iroegbu

When I am not making the rain fall
And flood the villagers huts and farms
And to make the river banks overflow
So that the forests pathway is swampy
And the great crocodiles are washed ashore;
Then I will be watching the glittering stars
And talking about the stars, the night and moon
Well, the night is never complete without a tale
For the sleepy little ones,
But this time, no reading from a book
I shall tell you of the Forest and her folks
… Oke- Iroegbu

(a)
Once when the Forests owned all the land
And the Forest King has loved the greens
For it spread, such that the white mountains
Were covered with green grasses and plants
The Wind truly loved the look on the Mountain
For during the Winter, she had grown terribly cold
That she felt absolutely nothing even for the Wind
Then she had no dimples, no smiles, no blushing
Then it was only the Tomato that blushed about
Tanners, farmers, pupeteers called out to her
And all she could was smile and blush deep red
The Ice King wooed the Mountain and usually
Gathered about her face to give her a warm kiss
But this never went down well with the cool Wind
Now that the Ice King has gone with his captains
And Summer has come, the Forests came with their greens
How awlful, the Wind felt all year round
Seemed he was just a big time born loser!
But the true logic being that the Mountain
Was never meant for this young Wind

(b)
Now it was the tradition that the young men
Cut wood in the neighboring green forests
Before they can be allowed to chose a maiden
There was no axes in the town and near hamlets
And men were desperate for things
Even when they are not ready and ripe for it
Mirtle was a young man, despised and frail
Naturally dull, but deep inside he was a man
The youth of the hamlet, saw him as a weakling
And infact unfit for this great competition
So he was abandoned, and the other men
Went deep into the hearts of the green forest
Looking for wood, for there was no axe then
Then came dwarves walking about the hamlet
Without food or warm clothing
And night came upon them daily
And they starve and want warmness
And no one cared or even looked at them
For the villagers loathed the dwarves
But not all of them were villains
The weak Mirtle might be weak physically
But he had compassion and love
And knew what it meant to be cold
Not from the treacherous night weather
But from the hatred that lurks in peoples hearts
Mirtle gave his food and warm cloths
To some of the dying dwarves
Sharing with them till he had none
One night, the Chief Dwarf presented a gift
And lo! An axe, not just ordinary
And so Mirtle had wood and a fair maid
For his kindness to strangers in need

I knew you got the message, I had imagined and made this story to teach about love and kindness. Abraham entertained angels without knowing it.

Categories
Uncategorized

The Seeker

image

I see a golden ray
Giving light from afar
Up the lonely road
Near the cliffs edge
Where the leaves fall in circles
Caring about nothing
As they fall, happily
And the skies not to be seen
But a sieve of the suns light
Falling thru the waving trees
Now and then,
The rodents of the trees
Curious to know the passerby
Rush about the tree branches
Enjoying the damp dark nest
Which surround the forest
Playing the hide and seek
Wondering what the passerby seeks,
The road is quiet
Made of ten thousand layers
Of fallen leaves piled up
One and two on another
The yellow leaf cares not
If it falls, lays on a red leaf
It is a circle of life
A painting learnt in life

But here I seek the way,
Through this enchanted forest
Blessed, but I like to see the sun light

Oiroegbu Halls

Categories
Nature

The Squirrels

A walk thru the tree forest
A green serene park
With trees hanging about
Welcoming all, with the soft wind
Playing the violin,
Which hung on their branches
And moving from here to there
Dancing on the pathway
Allowing us see the sun
Thrice in a minute,
Hiding all sweet creatures
All my tree dwelling fellows
Then like a flash
A shadow ran past
Jumping, scaling the trees
Like some ninja,
Fast, going for the attack
Another followed, two more
Heading, the way the first went
Jumping, rushing, bounding
Stopping now and then
To see who passes by
Like Robin, of Locksley
The forest guardian,
And his merry men
A strange creature of the tree
Boldly, carefully stood out
On a tree branch
Peering, studying the passersby
Quietly and unaware our returned gaze
Maybe she let us see her
And all her little ones
Hiding behind her body
But their tails still gave them away
An encounter of man and nature

Categories
Series

The Legend of Wawadomea

Verse 1: Cannibals of the East

Far out the lonely seas of the Indies
Our maiden vessel sailed
Hitting the strongest winds
Surfing the wild oceans
And at all times; bumping into the skies

In this quiet piece of the ocean
A strange sea of some sort
Where there stays a blue sky
An evenings journey with the Cods
A short lived companionship
For there came the black sharks
Gliding majestically; cunningly shy

But this time there was a sigh
A horn; calling from the masts top
“Ahoy, land! Ahoy, land!”
And those excitements that followed
“Aye!” the Lifnante growled thru raised binoculars
“That is some land for sure.”

An hour and some seconds
The Wave was tethered gently
Along those lonely coasts
A great vegetation stood before us
Strangely; the forests seem to have no life
We set about making some fire
For night was on its way
But we dared not stray near the woods…

To be continued…

Oke Iroegbu (c)

Categories
Uncategorized

A Tale of the Lakes: The Duck

Once upon a quiet lake
Beside a green forest
Lived a Duck and her chicks
All day they waddle through the waters
Enjoying the serenity
A day came and the Duck
Brought her chicks all about her
‘Quack quack Daak’ she began
‘You have been friends
With the Turtle
You know the Lake
More than your siblings
Pray, tell me
How many times would
Something happen to you
And you would learn?’
‘Quack quack momma
I would learn only
When it happens all times!’
The first duck answered
Mother Duck nodded
And turned to the next duck
‘Quack quack Duuk
You are not scared of the weeds
You fought off the Eels
But tell me
How many times
Would something happen
And you learn from it?’
‘Quack quack momma
I can only learn
If it happened to me’
Mother Duck nodded
And turned to the last
‘Quack quack Deek
You are scared of all
Ripples and fishes
You have few friends
I wonder, but let me know
How many times
Would you learn from something?’
‘Quack quack momma
I wont learn from any misdids
I shall learn from others mistakes
I shall watch the Eels movements
And all ripples on the lake
That are not made by my kind
And I shall always be careful’