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Mindtravels: Ngai of Kirinyaga

by Julie Adams

keeper of Kikuyu peoples; farmers,
Ngai presides upon the mountain top
they face each day, like Mecca,
in prayer

under heavy rains, the red earth
splashes at the foot of Mt. Kenya
far from the seas, he sees
where hurricanes are birthed

humble tribesmen reap southern slopes
under a morning blood orange,
taste rain in the air, minerals
carried on wind from India's ocean
into coffee treetops,

black currents flavor the wood
of wet mills, tangy with grapefruit
a citric washing,seeping
into the copper soil

of a thousand seasons, and before.
Ngai has blessed this fertile land, its Kikuyu people too,
so I ask when you take a sip
of your Starbucks venti
can you taste the red sweat of Ngai

02/24/2006

Author's Note: Ngai is the name of the god who is said to preside atop Mt. Kenya, in the district of Kirinyaga.

Posted on 02/24/2006
Copyright © 2021 Julie Adams

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 03/30/06 at 04:04 PM

Evocative and thought provoking. Easily sets the soul aloft to travel with its words...message.

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