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Please tell the beloved Achebes, by Prof Tess Onwueme

I heard the news:
Okosisi Dalu.
But not Achebe
No!
Not the Achebe we know
He just cannot fall

For wherever he is
He stands
Taller
Than all
Your father, our brother
Chinua Achebe, the master storyteller
Yesterday made his grand exit
Into eternity

With resounding harvests of creativity, yet
He left a gaping hole in your heart
With many million dripping eyes all around the world
A Monumental Loss it is!
Irreplaceable, I know.
But do, take heart.

Our world—the Literary Universe, more so––
Will never be the same without him
Okosisi na ami mkpulu!
Neither will the Dead

For in his gentle assertive way
He will probe them all awake
Yes!
Awake from too much sleep
Faking a blind eye to our mounting mess here
Fuming and choking
The few whose conscience dare to live

Okosisi Adago!

Sure!
But tell them
Tell the Dead
Achebe’s coming
To ever tell it as it is––
As he did here––
For he will live and thrive and drive awake
The slumbering Dead
To retail Truth to the Living––
Where Truth Daily Lies, Dies, or is short-lived
So Chinelo, Chidi, Ike, Nneka…
Please help me hug Mama Christie––
And may you find Strength when you need it Ndo!


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