A Moment to Observe the Day of the African Child

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In observance of the Day of the African Child, today, June 16, 2015, we are delighted to share with our readers a poem selected by the youth activism organization,Young People Today, for its 2015 World Poetry Day contest prize. The poem, “Forgotten Future”, is an original composition by upcoming Liberian writer and poet, Lekpele M. Nyamalon.

“It was a very tough decision,” YPT said, “but… Lekpele’s entry, titled “Forgotten Future”, shares with us what he thinks young people deserve in a simple and beautifully haunting poem.”

Forgotten future
We don’t crave the stars
But a light to shine on our paths
That we stumble not
Not the moon
Just a space to play at night
And beam with innocence
We hope not for diamonds
But a precious gift of dignity
Buried beneath our ground
Let our girls live
And go to school too
Spare them from rape and genital mutilation
Our little boys aren’t men
For arms and drugs
Leave them
Give the earth when you’re done
We might need it
Free from pollution
We need a life
At least once
Is that hard?

About the Poet:
Lekpele M. Nyamalon is an upcoming Liberian writer and poet. He has featured at several open-mic events across Liberia and contributes regularly to the Poetry column of the Daily Observer Newspaper in Liberia. Lekpele has featured at the Liberian National Museum Arts exhibition as a guest poet and the One billion rising of the vagina monologues in Monrovia. He was recently selected as a participating Poet, along with other West African Poets on a Poet’s residency on Goree Island, Senegal organized by the Open Society Initiative of West Africa (OSIWA) to articulate their views of a new Africa.

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