Elaine Posted June 7, 2004 Share Posted June 7, 2004 This poem has always helped me a lot when I am missing my parents and other loved ones. This poem has also been set to music, a hymn. The version I have is sung by Sweet Honey in the Rock on the Album entitled "Breaths." You can listen to a clip from it on Amazon if you would like. Here is a translation of the poem by Senegalese poet, Birago Diop Hear more often things than beings, the voice of the fire listening, hear the voice of the water. Hear in the wind the bushes sobbing, it is the sigh of our forebears. Those who are dead are never gone; they are there in the thickening shadow. The dead are not under the earth: they are in the tree that rustles, they are in the wood that groans, they are in the water that runs, they are in the water that sleeps, they are in the hut, they are in the crowd, the dead are not dead. Those who are dead are never gone, they are in the breast of the woman, they are in the child who is wailing and in the firebrand that flames. The dead are not under the earth: they are in the fire that is dying, they are in the grasses that weep, they are in the whimpering rocks, they are in the forest, they are in the house, the dead are not dead. - Birago Diop The poem is entitled African Diaspora, which gives the poem a whole other layer of meaning. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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