Part II Requiem_When All This Is Over

When all this is over
We will remember the pitiful anticipation the nights before dawn
As we waited for each day’s proclamation
We will remember how numbers punctuated our lives: commas and periods
We will remember it was the commas that knotted our stomachs so.
And the comfort we would have found, mustered –
speaking in low tones, having been robbed.
We will remember the prayers we made, each alone
Facing the wall,
Facing the rising sun,
Facing the setting sun,
Facing the empty streets,
Turning away from the dying,
And burying the dead.

When all this is over
And the remaining broken souls awake to a new world
Having been steeped in agonizing months of frustration
Consuming accounts of deception
Rewriting a narrative of oppression
A people plagued by imminent depression.

When all this is over
What then, should we write on their epitaph?
Those whom we hurriedly buried,
as if we knew the earth was eager to provide the embrace
that we reluctantly could not give.
Those whom we hurriedly buried
as if afraid to displease the gods of plague.
What will we want to remember of the departed souls –
When the skies are less somber with grey.
What then, will their eulogy say?
Who then, will write the memoir?

Georginah Ndanu
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