I Once Made Things Happen by Njeri Wangari


I once stood tall hovering above all

arms stretched wide
fingers playing with the sun
casting dancing shadows beneath
feet reaching out like a lover’s embrace
I once stood tall

I once swayed and swung
to the whistles of my friend the wind
and he would sometimes make me swing my clothes off
I have since grown as old as the winds
Strong and grounded
I once swayed

I once made things happen
The clouds cried out my name
The streams matured from boys to men
I made women ululate
For I brought warmth to their lives
I once made things happen

I once made the ground shed its dust off
quenching its deep thirst
as I made the heavens thunder
scaring children to their mothers’ underskirt
I once made all this happen

Now, I live in fear
Knowing that my day is coming.

Yours too is coming
when you cut the rest of my kind down
when you fail to plant my children next to me
letting them suckle on their mother’s breast
as my food to them is fire, rain, shade and shelter to you

Soon your song shall becomeI once made things happen
when it dawns on you
you needed me
more than I did you


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