A war song from Somalia. The Mahdi, Muhammad Ahmad, was a nationalist and religious leader who expelled British forces from the Nile valley and governed the whole region for ten years before the British returned in 1898 to impose colonial rule. See also The Sacrifice.

No man exists who can lay hold of a wild elephant and lead him around,
No man exists who can grip a lion by the nape of the neck and give him a punch:
So it is with reference to the Mullah.

from Oral Poetry from Africa (1984)
compiled by Jack Mapanje and Landeg White,