The Drum

By June Perkins

I love that drum’s discordant sound
Parading round and round
It’s the source of freedom calls
Vibrating sound to ground.

To nomads stolen from Africa
It’s liberty’s lambada
Laughing/ leaping/ leading
Rebellion of many slaves.

Clans joining other clans
Angapu and Maipa Fakai
In Maipa Village became one.
Rhythmic blues to cure the hated one
Cruelty’s aficionado parading
Round and round.

Conjure him some pictures
Of threatening/striding/clans
Red/ yellow/faces/advancing
Challenging his possession
Of the people he despises
For their colour/vigour/movement

The fool thinks he can deaden
Triumphant/ marrow rhythms/
Serene calypsos/allegro’s breathing
Life into our crying corpses.

Continuing calypsos
Breathing beauty’s moderatos
Speak of dancing loving marriages
Uniting all the people
Beyond their clans.

Oh joyous drum!
Give harmonies
Parading round and round

Renew your sounds of
Around/ around/ around.

By June Perkins

Published in New England Review, Armidale, many years ago.


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