An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Poetry Award
I WROTE THIS POEM about my grandfather, my father’s father, who I never met and never knew. There are land issues back home in Vanimo and it’s difficult to have a say when the man who knew it all and had it all is buried six feet below. It’s sad to see how his brothers took advantage of that.
The urgency of returning home is but a calling from the grave
An old man’s voice resounding against every wave
As he tosses and turns within his pit
Of his brothers foolishness I must admit
The exchange of sacred soil meant to be shared amongst us all
Now exploited without regard - indeed he will fall!
His greed has consumed all goodness left
Which now without fail, with lead him to his death
How foolish must one be?
To plant such evil seeds, seeds of impurity
Out from the earth an old man’s wrath will grow
And leave him baffled of how this is so
Bit by bit our land tendered freely
Without consent of a man who though he was but merely
He calls me now to return to my home
He sees all lost to a malicious gnome
His fears I see more plainly now
Not knowing who, where and how
I hear his voice as I lay in bed
“Come back to me” pleadingly said
I lay alone, surrounded by absurdity
Of men whose heart lack a sheer sense of morality
The warmth and care you take with you
And a love I miss so dearly too
I now watch each precious step
Even at night as you take your nap
I look forward to meeting you again
In a journey I know will soon come to an end”
The urgency to returning home is but a calling from the grave
But an old man’s profession for a generation he hopes to save!
I hear him calling, he’s calling my name
And when I return, I will be doing the same!