Growling roars from the North end
Successive streaks split the darkening sky
Deafening explosions triply bang
Mountains tremble, the earth quakes
Hanging calabashes fall with a clang
Squeaking rats hide in rafters in the huts
The little child whispers, “Maama, I want to pee”
Couples spend sleepless nights and postpone their love
Waiting uneasily for crumbling of the sky.
And then thunder strikes!
Half the roof is gone
Stampeding commotion reigns.
Father forgets son
Husband forgets wife
Mother misses child and picks cat
Terror tears the family asunder.
And tomorrow reveals all-
Two or three kids perching on mothers
Students carrying tin trunks
All smeared with dust and sweat, worn with footing;
Cowherds forcing forward tired and hungry brutes
Mooing and moaning with weariness.
Schools and colleges eventually close
Classrooms and churches serve as interim
Dwelling for the fleeing
Military lorries groan hurriedly by
Laden with human ruins.
The war rages on
Towns are ravaged
Buildings are blown recklessly
The daring scamper with the loot
From shop, school, hospital …
The city is taken
The government intervenes
And finally the oppressor is hunted