Tribal Marks

Alabi Ọwala

A poem by Amore David Olamide.

Alabi, Labi, the apogee
The one whose marks shines and beam
Alabi, Labi Owala
The only heritage preserver.

Those dashes that pointed on
Have given people various deception
Some said you gamely fought a lion
And those are the injuries you carried on.

You go around with those imprinted scars
Arched at the hand of primitiveness
Alabi your advent has become resentment
Of bemoaned vexatious art.

Makeup couldn’t hide your marks
And your academic credentials
Alabi, it is not a severed plague
To be revered with tribal tag.

You’ve become the flag bearer
Of those prudent westerners
You’ve become the talking point
On people’s mutual tongues.

Those lines; that are laterally laid off
By the unblunted tooth of razor
Have become your tainted flaws
And they have become what people play on

They call your cheeks a plastic ball
Some cruely call it palm-frond
Alabi let your cheeks remain precious
With those marks that symbolised fashion.

I don’t know if it was carved with an axe
Or with the butcher’s knife
I just had to eerily sympathise
For those people’s needless act

Alabi je ebure
The panegyrics of appeal divination
I knew you won’t like them at all
Subjecting this embarrassment
To your children and children’s children.

Remember your forerunner
Lere Paimo and Akintola
They were gashed with a knife
Still they dished among elites.

Let those marks not get you thwart
They have nothing against your potential
You can be cheekily awful
And you can be dynamite, too.
— Amore David Olamide

About Amore

Amore David Olamide is a revolutionary columnist and a poet that writes literally in parabolic style, conventional genre and sees scenes in epic dynamism of traditional epilogues, eulogies and captivating artistic poetry. He is typically known as Ajanaku for the words he trades cannot be neglected by mortals, gods or incubus.

Image: From the collection 'Hââbré: The Last Generation' by Joana Choumali.

This poem was published with permission from Amore David Olamide. All rights reserved.