DEAR BLACK BROTHERS
Dear black brothers,
Gallant as the wild antelope, raised in the ravishing brilliance of the ever green savanna with thick black leather for skin; we bring greetings from the brotherhood. Rumour has it that in no distant time, you will be journeying far beyond our borders to seek greener pastures in the white man's land. We also hear that you have chosen the way of the Mediterranean, whose anger our incantations cannot appease nor can our voices pacify. We hear that your conscience is sealed unto death and for these reasons our tears flow in torrents.
Fellow kinsmen, warriors of no meager honour, our ageing hearts trust your bloodline and ancestral roots but definitely not your route. We do not trust the death traps that spread from Agades to Duruku and the grilling sahelian weather through to Tripoli. We do not trust the compasses of your desert guides whose north turn south and east point west. We also know that you are not given to much starvation and thirst. We do not trust our light skinned Libyan cousins who might abduct, rob, rape and main you for sport; talk more of the dingy boats you board with panting hearts, kidneys, livers and even lungs.
But brothers, who taught you these? Who taught you to use the back door like dignified cowards and when did eating through the anus begin to feel good? How seductive was the waistline of the sea goddess to lure you into her bosom? Did not your mothers ever warn you about the deserts; the burial place of taboos? Who told you the journey would last only a few days and who taught you to be suicidal?
Tomorrow, we will hear again the ghosts of departed brothers wailing by our windows. They say they never had a good wash during their odysseys till they were forcefully washed ashore on the Island of Lampedusa. They dared to dine with the devil and it turned out to be nothing but a sup full of horrors.
Men of my kindred, for many days, our shrines have oozed of sacrifices and whenever we toss our cowries for you on this matter, it reads danger. Only know that the gods have cursed your journey with countless perils for there is no sweetness in sufferings, much more if it is not for a noble cause.
Where we come from, we only say 'Hakuna Matata' when the chips are down because indeed, there is never a place like home.