An Elegy – Part 4 By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr.

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Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jnr., Ph.D.

  (For Rev.-Col. Eugene Boapea Boamah Sintim[-Brown],

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Aka Kwaku Brown,

Retired Chaplain-General of the Ghana Armed Forces, 1941-2017)

 

Dear God,

you did not

let me die –

Uncle,

you did me

great good

in the long

run,

and I have been

running nonstop

since then –

in the letter to Papa Sintim

at Asiakwa

that morning

Reverend Bromley

returned me,

you said something

about me not

fitting in…

“It is all well

and good,”

Papa Sintim would heave

a deep sigh

and say

as I stood in his study

in front

of his desk,

“It is all well

and good;

grandson,

you are home.”

There is something

excruciatingly

painful

about the passing

of a beloved

kinsman,

legion good times

shared are often

blurred

by the bad;

in your case,

though,

you always

assured me

of your unstinted

love even

in the bleakest

of times,

you also told me

there were

a lot of

things I would

learn

in the righteous

course

of time –

then there was

that one grave

moment

your chance

transit stop

saved my life…

I was green

with jaundice,

Mama thought

it was only

a ploy

to shirk

my daily share

of chores…

that day,

you got deeply

upset

and spoke up

for me,

then you made me

dress up

and took me away

with you,

there was

no time

for me

to take

a bath –

that same day,

when we arrived

at Mom’s

in Accra,

I got admitted

to Korle-Bu…

the doctors said

I had been

within two days

of my death,

that was in June

or July of

nineteen-

seventy-

three,

the year Mom left

for Madison,

Wisconsin,

pretty much

against her will;

she had no other choice,

if the future

was to comfy

and bright –

Uncle,

you once

saved

my life,

Wofa,

you also gave me

back my life…

it would cause

a rift

between Mom

and Auntie Doe,

her cotenant

and kid sister

whose marriage

had landed

on the rocks;

all her four kids

were with her ex…

there is something

bizarre that ill-fate

wreaks on the victim’s

heart

and

mind –

Auntie Doe

would ask me

me to wait

for Mom,

though the clinic

was only a mile

away,

truly,

only a dear mother

can give life

to the dying

child…

Uncle,

you gave me

one more chance

at life,

Dear Mom,

you gave me

life

when all hope

was lost…

Uncle,

it was you

who brought it

all together

once more…

Wofa Brown,

peace,

Uncle,

peace,

be still,

be still

and silent

as a dove…

7/15/17

(RIP)