A Broom's Prayer

Often have I swept the floor, the veranda, the yard
and all the passages of the house.
I do not know whether as dedication or devotion
the rough hand of the housewife has,
by my daily use, swept our household clean.

And there are so many brooms accomplishing
such simple household chores!
O God, find for me a hardy and effective sweeper,
Who, with me, will once and for all, sweep the whole world clean.

How abundantly the earth is polluted with terrorism
and how immeasurably dust and dirt accumulate on all sides of the
world causing it to bloat like a decaying corpse,
frantically spreading its unmistakable, bad smell
And pervading and filling the very air we breathe.
O God, find for me a hardy and effective sweeper,
Who, with me, will once and for all,
sweep the whole earth clean.

by Sayeed Abubakar

Other poems of ABUBAKAR (230)

Comments (3)

Yes, it's not as easy as sweeping the floor (((
A Broom’s Prayer to God against Terrorism’, by Abubakar, presents an extended metaphor likening the sweeping of a broom to clean a dirty house to the ‘wishful’ sweeping of a broom to rid the world of terrorism. The poem begins with the light-hearted, slightly humorous tone of a personified and mundane house broom. He explains how he is often used by the housewife to ‘sweep the floor, the veranda, the yard / and all the passages of the house’. It is a matter of some conjecture in the first stanza of the poem, whether the act of sweeping is, for the broom, as for the housewife, an act of dedication or devotion, like the cleansing daily ritual of prayer. The poem continues with the broom’s prayer to find for it ‘a hardy and effective sweeper, / Who, with me, will once and for all, sweep the whole earth clean’. The suggestion here is that it will take a strong and resolute sweeper, a strong and visionary leader perhaps, to rid the world of the scourge of terrorists and terrorism. The poet’s language is figurative as he employs a simile to describe how terrorism has affected the world: ‘How abundantly the earth is polluted with terrorism / and how immeasurably dust and dirt accumulate on all sides of the / earth causing it to bloat like a decaying corpse, / frantically spreading its unmistakable, bad smell’. Abubakar’s solution to terrorism, a sweeping clean of the earth, seems simplistic at first read, but upon deeper reflection, the poet’s intercessory prayer suggests that the solution to this most distressing and destructive world problem is far from simple.
This is a fantastic analogy about a simple broom but if God could give mankind a vigorous sweeper to sweep all the badness and sadness away in one big sweep, you ask the question who will be the sweeper! Very thought provoking! !