JUST YESTERDAY I WAS
My waist winks,
My beads beat
And all bangles jingle
My blood and water bubble
For the Prince of Miya
The Prince was here Yesterday,
He saw me, didn’t he?
I twisted, he looked and passed.
I ran Toro way and crossed him
I fell near his legs. He looked at me.
What a soft hand of passion
With a palm of shyness picked me up!
I wanted him to wrap me in his Absalom hair
I wanted to visit the stream on a horse,
Leaning on his back.
But he just looked.
I cried. My friends mocked me.
I waited till the sun judged me.
I stood till the moon and stars mocked me.
Alone in the dark whistles of night crawlers
And threats of howlers
Cold torched me and mosquitoes suckled.
Now it dawns.
The King of Ogon,
To whom Prince Lotan’s father pays tribute
While merely passing by
Had taken me
I was weak but I was on a horse,
Leaning on his back with my hands around him.
He’s not a fraud or thief.
Your aroko is clear,
Prince of Miya’s mourning his lost love.
Yesterday I was
By Iroko tree on the palace narrow way
Miya’s rich friends blinded his eyes
Till Ogon now has me.
Ogon will invite his father’s house
For my queen’s day.
Yesterday I was his goal
Yesterday I was his passion
Yesterday I was reachable
Yesterday I was at his legs
Yesterday his hands held me,
Yesterday I was his business,
But for the people he walked with
And their worth to him in his mind
He was unwilling to possess me.
And my beauty cannot waste
since Ogon gives obeisance to time.