Poetry

A Return Visit to Mount Darwin

Is that the baobab which shaded him

thirty-five years ago as he prised

landmines and booby traps from lethal lairs

knowing that every second could be his last?

Is that a descendant of the baboon

who mocked him, an unbeliever, as he

crossed himself ironically back then

and took the go away bird literally

staying away from the land of his birth?

Until now; a bible not an F.N.

to protect him: a weapon to convert

people whose parents and grandparents

once wanted him dead.

Later that night, lying on his back

gazing at a dazzling sky, convinced

of the existence of a caring God,

he feels at home again thanking

his training for allowing him eternal life.

In the dishevelled cemetery nearby

a comrade’s bones are chewed by ants

as they have been for centuries.

The baobab’s deformed arms tickle tinkling stars

bohowing baboons breed boisterously

and platoons of ants march in time to the cemetery.

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