This Hands (Agony of a mother who lost her son in a xenophobic attack)

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With this same hands, I carried you when you gave your first wailing to the world. With this hands I lift you up to the gods for benison, asking them to kiss you with their blessing. With this hands I toiled the earth, to give you your daily bread.

Yes, with this once strong hands, that is now old, feeble and wrinkled. I watched you grow daily, with wits, strength and valor. I saw the strength in your heart, and the smile you gave for all. I can’t but give the gods a white ram, for their lips still poured blessings on you. You are such a lad, that makes my watching eyes so glad. When you break the news of going to the City of the Sun, my heart leapt for joy, the prophesy won’t be fulfilled, the one budda gave, that in my lineage, poverty has come to stay.

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I poured palm oil on the god of the road to grant you mercies, sprinkled salt on the god of wealth and good luck to make you come back with wealth from the city of the sun. And so you left, my hope was on you, your hope on your wits and the kiss of the gods. Year after year I have a reason for joy, all you sent was good tidings from the city of the sun, I can’t but pour palm oil and sprinkle salt on the gods.

This prophecy won’t be fulfilled. Then we heard the news, they said there is an attack, they call it xenophobia, and though I can’t pronounce it I know it sounds scary. So off I rushed, to beg the gods for you safety, I pour libations on the god of war, to make sure you come back to my hands safe and sound. Day by day I stood in wait by the village gate to see you come, I can’t just wait, to give you a hug. Then the news was broken, I could sense in the morning, when my pot fell and broke, I look up to god of wisdom, to make this omen known to me.

Is it the water of your pregnant wife, adding to my joy a son, or is it the falling of my bright star, the departure of my son to life. But you came back home, they wrapped you in that white cloth, amidst dirge and wailing. You’ve left for the city of the sun, with songs of praises at your back. But here you are coming back to home with songs of sorrows before you. And for the last time you are back, to this hands that fed you, this hands that wields her hope and future around you.

This once strong hands that led you, hoping that one day you will hold it when it is weak and feeble. This hands that lays you to bed, with lullaby in her mouth to lure your life filled eyes to sleep. And raise you up every morning, to take you back to herself. But here you are, your head laid on her laps, lullaby replaced with mourning, because your eyes are dim by death. And her hands will lay you to a sleep, but she won’t have you back in the morning. She gave a deep sigh, one heavy with grieve and laden with sorrows. O! The prophecy wasn’t fulfilled, for her house is stored with riches, but what has the gods wrought, the only wish I have is this son, the new born, the hope you left, won’t just inherit your riches and neglect your legacies. The true wealth you left my son, are the reports of your good deeds.

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