Saturday Poem

We Are Here

we are here
slaving for sovereignty by selling freedom
into the captivity of patriotism.
we are here silent, brainwashed
we are here
poor, frightened, and angry
wondering who is the next torture victim or petrol-
bomb casualty.
we are here, clutching at a fragile economy
a disintegrating social system.

we are here feasting on propaganda
while poets sing praise litanies
to dictators.
we are here
queuing for basic commodities
chasing sky-rocketing prices
doing business in an unstable environment
we are here where the dollar is extinct
and millionaires are homeless

mother, what happened to the breadbasket of Africa?
sister, what happened to Africa’s paradise?
brother, what happened to the sunshine city
and that of Kings?

we are here honouring the zhing-zhong products flooding the
market while home industry gathers dust in
derelict shelves.
well, we are here,
wondering where, when and how
we lost our bearings.

by Cosmas Mairosi
from Poetry International Web, 2007