Lumumba: A Rhyme

Congo. A bongo. A drum and a joke.
A man on his knees with a knife to his throat.

Bombing The Congo. A Belgian pastime.
Lay out the bodies and dust them with lime.

Rubber, Our Mother. A tree leaking gold.
Lapping that sap? King Leopold!

A song without notes. Dust on the tongue.
No rust on the weapons. A nation undone.

Where have I gone, and what am I now?
Adrift through the grass then shat through a cow.

Adrift through the grass then shat through a cow,
lifted to heaven and thrown to the ground.

No rust on the weapons? A nation undone
will laugh at itself as it cuts down its sons.

Lapping that sap, King Leopold
will wrack up a perfect, windpipe-shaped mold.

Lay out the bodies and dust them with lime,
bulldoze a trench and wrap them in white.

A man on his knees with a knife to his throat.
Granite Mobuto strikes heroic-man-pose!

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Paul David Adkins lives in New York, United States, and works as a counselor.

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