Mask Monologue                           Em’kal Eyongakpa


Em’kal Eyongakpa


born from the cross rivers…
I read you crossed rivers and rivers & it’s products…
your spirals still evoke my imaginary of a cross river cosmology
seseku Eyongarreybiti later explored.
I am sure it was quite a travel by sea,
today my trip to here, from your birthplace takes less than walking time from Mukonyo to Kembong where you emerge,
and I travel with body…wow
In a recent past, less than 360 full moons it took for seeds from your birth place to embrace a third world tag
& less than 600 fullmoons for seeds from your vegetative homogeny to be-COME IN-dependence to a new tongue.
chiefdoms and neighbouring fondoms barely see feudal battles these days,
new divisions were however forged from two later tongues you never stayed to experience…
crowns weren’t sold…power simply shifted
the chiefs from the land you emerge take orders these days.
you felt a bit of the rhythm I guess
we gained some… we lost some…more
We still feel the traits of songs & moves forged after your creation…transformed along new lines of praise.
patches of trance still remain in a new born again tribe.
I struggle to memorize the tongue you listened to as you were born from the hands of man & spirits…
Freehand I speak to you this day and in this tongue I can barely attempt a transcription of emotions…
from hybrid forms of the spoken, that dances between brother tongues I speak & those from a heterogeny you could hardly imagine.
We’ve danced to orders from 2 paramount rulers after the short century that enabled your depature,
first from the sahel and then the jungle south.
We’ve moved and we move.
specific drawings on transformed plant matter have replaced songs for ears and memory.
things change…time changes…
as time changed…things have changed, at least from what I experienced.
Without the luxery of collective memory, I would dare not attempt to describe lest one life time would not be enough.