From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Special Messages
In Loving and Everlasting Memory of Retired Major Major Abu Bakarr Danielu Sidique Noah
Nov 11, 2010, 17:00

Abu Noah Poetic Prowess


As the Mount Everest Family on November 11, 2010, marks five years of the passing away of its Late Chairman Rtd. Major Abu Bakarr Danielu Sidique Noah (known fondly at home and internationally as Abu Noah), the poetic vision and the evocative power of this man who was described in Abuja by Nigeria’s Obasanjo’s government in November, 2004 as ‘Africa’s Shakespeare’ is today highlighted.


In one of his numerous published anthologies of poems here is Abu Noah’s prophetic ‘Sierra Leone Shall Rise’ from the book Measuring My Country’s Heartbeats.


In these verses Abu Noah is at once lambasting the perennial ailments of Sierra Leone’s society - ‘envy’ and ‘detraction’.  These he refers to as “dangerous weeds” that breed evil in our midst.  These two destructive seeds have already affected many homes, he points out.


Sierra Leoneans must “watch out” lest the “dying embers” of the war that we had gone through be rekindled, he states.


The poet emphasises “Envy and detraction cloak sick minds”.  He cautions that “lying, slippery tongues” distort every good in others and he points to “A dangerous array of chatter boxes” “No job; no food; no home”.  And decency’s chased by rabid foxes


Abu Noah however is still optimistic despite all these ravages:

Sierra Leone shall rise and flourish

Her sinews are being tried and hardened


Please read on:

Sierra Leone Shall Rise


Beware, oh dear Sierra Leone

You systematically nurse dangerous weeds

They have been the bane of many homes

These two, envy and detraction, do evil breed


They pose, to all, ingenious riddles

Compounded, to baffle sound judgements

Though impudent and reckless in girdle

Wantonness and shameless bravado’s their filament


Alas, Sierra Leone, watch out

Enkindle not the dying embers of that conflagration

Which, dracula-like, consumed us in droughts

And left the young in consternation


Envy and detraction cloak sick minds

Hark, whence floweth such fearful din

Aye, mon Patrie, c’est vos enfants

They are addicted to the opium of sick whims


Blinded by the opacity of small minds

They distort every good in others

Their lying, slippery tongues, feed simple minds

With inveterate calumnies, their betters to bother


Alas, Sierra Leone, wither goeth thou

‘Halt, about face turn!’, says the ‘sojaman’

Every nation must to wisdom bow

Athens of West Africa, seek your oriflamme


Too many piglets in foxes’ holes

A dangerous array of chatter boxes

No job; no food; no home

And decency’s chased by rabid foxes


Sierra Leone shall rise and flourish

Her sinews are being tried and hardened

Lazy bones shall be nursed and furbished

And, the Athens of West Africa, shall, her fame regain

© Copyright 2005, Freetown, Sierra Leone.