(1965 / Abor, Volta Region, Ghana)

No Contest

when first the bougainvillea
thrust its petals of gold up in the desert
a sudden tremor run through
green things in the dim woods of the savannah

bougainvillea in the desert
it crinkled their spears

love brought back
the crumbling sea of coal fire
its the rebirth of the Man
with wild-born things that thrill and blow

inside my loins was a dance like
the city's ceaseless roar and din

every vein made onto us kiths and kins

the dance with the bougainvillea
is far from the brambly paths I used to know

far from the rustling brooks that slip and hide
the dance is the lucid juicy aroma of the vine

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