A short poem sent to us by Laju Ereyitomi Oyewoli (see also Mother is Gold), about the costs of comparing one thing to another that is really not related.
And the foolish Rat
Followed the Lizard…
A song performed to accompany the rituals of the masked dancers, the Gule Wamkulu, a secret initiatory society othat exists in Malawi, Zambia, and Mozambique (see also the Gule Wamkulu Funeral Song).
This Gule Wamkulu song was recorded at Njombwa Village, Kasungu District in Malawi. The singers lament the death of the wise elders who can no longer provide guidance to the living.
The elders are gone
Gone to the grave
There’s nowhere for us to go!..
A new poem by Amore David Olamide, in praise of Oníkòyí one of the provincial chiefs in the Ọ̀yọ́ Empire (see also Oníkòyí, the Warrior King).
Oníkòyí played an important part in the political and military administration of the kingdom, defending the Ọ̀yọ́ Empire against external forces and leading the army to battle as their Field Marshal. It was also his responsibility to lead all provincial kings to the metropolis at Ọ̀yọ́ on the annual festival when these chiefs paid homage and tribute to the Aláàfin, ruler of the empire.
Tell them about an unflappable warrior
A warrior both at home and on the battlefield…
This is a song composed by Barton Harry, one of the popular banjo players in Malawi who played in a duo with Kausale on acoustic guitar. A few of the pioneers of this tradition recorded in Lusaka, Zambia and later on in Zimbabwe as migrant Malawian artists.
Oooh, Absalom my child
Absalom, why have you died?
He died at war with his brethren…
Gule Wamkulu is a secret initiatory society of men from Chewa-speaking communities in Malawi, Zambia, and Mozambique. The dancers wear masks personifying the spirits of ancestors and sacred animals native to the lands. They perform primarily at funerals and memorial services but also at celebrations. This performance was recorded at Mkuwazi Village in the Salima district of Malawi.
Bury me on the veranda
Bury me on the veranda
Eyeee… so that when my mother
Should see me and say I am dead…
A poem praising the bravery of a Swazi king, Mavuso, who fought unsuccessfully against the Afrikaaners. The land of the Ngwane kingdom was taken over by Afrikaners, who then had renamed the land the Transvaal and used it for commercial farming in the 1840s.
Mavuso of Ngwane,
Dangazela of Ngwane of Sobhusa.
News of war eats the child still in the womb.
If a person can walk he would have run away…