Adieu, Baba Ilu! By ‘Dipo Onabanjo

A promise fulfilled, By 'Dipo Onabanjo
'Dipo Onabanjo

The man died August 18th

His heart burst

And he flew away

To be seen no more

Except in dreams!

Pa Jubrila Amereya

Baba Ilu, patriarch of our village

The eldest of the elders

Head of hunters, wise and witty

Kind, thorough  and truthful

Ogboju Ode who talked to the gods

On our behalf he consulted the spirits

He knew the secrets of the past

And the abodes of the gods

The pantheon of our forefathers

Herbalist, moralist, spiritualist

He healed the sick and the afflicted

Dancer, crusader, masquerader

He was all, yet so pure

His talents he used as he deemed fit

And for the goodness of all

Too bold to bow to tyrants

He whipped the wicked

With tongues of flame

But cuddled the just and the weak

Now this cultural icon is gone

To the abode of the gods

Who next to show us the way?

Except the One who called him

To His high abode

Where we all shall meet

To part no more.

Rest in peace, Papa Ameriya

You live in our hearts

To die no more!