I stood for 80 years behind the veil.
My task was to feel the bond,
Until which I wouldn’t belong.
Images flashed before me.
Groups and pairs of men and women of all races.
Then that of Saddam Hussein and George Bush stayed.
I felt the angst as I saw their gazes
Then a voice whispered,
“You must use your heart to see.
That’s how we all see each other here,
We feel the bond and live as one”
The voice was familiar.
It came from my childhood.
Hearing it felt like a joyful reunion.
I turned and looked back on a world that’s so convinced
I was dead and gone,
And I wondered how an entire human race could
Speed and spin itself into beliefs that robbed them of
Life’s abundant love and still think themselves alive.
I found and felt the bond- a place that had been within me all along.
I felt the rush of a thousand deferred joys that transformed my body into
A bundle of rapturous energy.
I am here now with countless families of the human race.
Earth-bound enemies who on this side have found the heaven that
Eluded them whilst they lived a dead version of life on earth.
Yasser Arafat, Yitzhak Rabin, Anwar Sadat and Shimon Peres
Who lost chunks of their humanity to years of war and frequent
Skirmishes of an ugly peace and broken truces,
Are here as brothers of one soul essence.
Nelson Mandela, Pik Botha, Oliver Tambo, Steve Biko and John Vorster,
Jonas Savimbi, Tom Mboya have all joined Chinua Achebe in saying,
“Nothing really fell apart and the center has always held”.
So is Nkrumah who was so surprised to find out, he actually never died.
He and JB have returned to the party days and kept wondering what the
Fuss had been about.
Saddam Hussein, the repressed twin of Abraham Lincoln are always
Hanging out and feasting. They too found their bond.
And Gandhi, whose wisdom stands taller than his stature,
Still lives in the hearts of men and falls as rain to
Refresh a volatile world with its gentle peace.
Now I see them in all the ways the world and I didn't allow ourselves to
Think of them.
Christ and bin Ladin are here with me. They met in an Iraqi Bethlehem
And both realized they were twins separated by time, but born of the
Same spirit essence of love and God.
I asked them about heaven.
Both of them pointed to their hearts and with the other hand,
Pointed to the earth,
They said each of us could make anywhere
A heaven if we saw each other with our hearts.
That resonated with me as I remembered how I’d caught glimpses of
Heaven in all the war torn cities and in the eyes of all the people and
Places my work had taken me.
What needless pain we bear while we live a dead version of life we
Proudly flaunt as the life!
Lives diminished by fear and insecurity.
I am here with all those who slipped through our peaceful efforts and
Died in war, of pain, of hunger, displacement and racial bigotry!
All the pain is left behind as we laugh now at a world so blinded and
Needlessly divided over trivia.
And while you mourn and say I am gone,
I Kofi Annan, Africa’s gift to the world,
Stand by you and whisper,
“See each other with your heart
And find and feel the bond,
So you live fully before you die”
By Amarkine Amarteifio, Accra. 11 thSeptember 2018.Copyright.
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