The Barracks

a poem by Nkwelle Assurance Nkwelle, Cameroon

(Written in Dec. 2006)
I came there and saw their usual lines,
To the arena of barrel against hand,
O, yes! Grass is green, so did I find man;
Red, black blue and white.
The great noise was calmed,
Calmed not for expertise in calming,
But calmed for the barrel's dreadful eye,
The instrument for peace, whose expertise
Left two with arrested breath.

But what peace were it to have left piece,
When in peaceful mission they left palpitation?
Let us calm with the barrel at the barracks,
For our call is to keep the peace, a collective peace
Of constructive destruction!

A calm with water tanks, a calm of justices,
Indeed, calm is called through collective fright
In a milieu of academic doctrine
Temporarily owned by black and red crowns
Like in the barracks!

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