a poem by Nkwelle Assurance Nkwelle, Cameroon

Masked beings raid and plunder and burn
The lambs of peace, sheltered by determination; but determined by pogroms, their fates, in forests they now reside.

Heroes of a denied race, free born but
Barrels speak and roared by these masks.
Shall our future too be masked?
We languish, we perish, this dormant
world speaks without hands; inaction.

How long, how long world?
Torched abodes, trees yell in forests, our
kids! Peace, what is thy price? Name it,
dam it!
Yemen, name thy price.
Syria, name thy price.
Congo, name thy price.
Ukraine and my land, Southern Cameroons,
We perish, machismo reigns. Anarchy's
Building rests with us. Entropy rules.

These masks that toy with lives and revel
In turpitude, we walk lame but we walk in
Fortitude. Determined, the spirit reigns.
We pay the price of freedom. We languish
in the whips of anarchy and pandonium
is forged. We shall outlive your times.

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