NYU Black Renaissance Noire Spring 2015 - Page 122

By HENRY DUMAS NGOMA ngoma* put thine ear to my belly O mwanamume who is my husband put thine ear here listen to the boom-sound beating there put they head over close O mume who is my lover feel this chest-sound pouding in thine ear’s drum aiwa aiwa it is the chest-sound same that booms my chest aiwa aiwa a strong sound running like feet of gazelle aiwa aiwa O mwali who is my wife put thy fiiners here O mume who knows my skin feel the skin-sound singing there 120 BRN-SPRING-2015.indb 120 aiwa aiwa thy belly sings thy belly dances aiwa aiwa my fingers dance my fingers sing louder sings the boom-sound louder the spirit chants the child-sound’s name aiwa aiwa O mwali in my morning mother of beauty mother of sun listen O my woman spirits of our fathers speaking louder see O man who is my husband see the wiggle beneath my belly what song is beating there? come O mwali of my sleep watch me I go to the goat to get his skin see me I go to the tree to get his bone listen me I sing to the village the god-sound trembles in her belly the god-sound walks a long safari come O mwali who the spirit blesses watch me I stretch goat-skin over the hollow-tree bone I dance my fingers on the bellow of goat aiwa aiwa listen mwali of my life watch me listen the goat-skin sings the book-sound louder louder sings the goat-skin louder the goat-skin sings the boom-sound louder sings the goat-skin louder louder louder booms the goat-skin boom-sound louder louder louder *”Ngoma” means “drum” in Swahili. [H.D.] 3/29/15 11:42 AM