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Roads/Driving in Ghana: A Biography of Organized Chaos

Wed, 28 Sep 2011 Source: Mensema, Akadu N.

*By Akadu Ntiriwa Mensema, Ph. D.

** I recently spent about two months in Ghana, and the next series of poems will

recount my observations and experiences. Stay tuned!

Elitist armed robbers

In SUVS, Ayariga tractors

Snaking around potholes

Lakes in our roads

With toads of iron-mounted stones

Lakes in our roads streaming away

Into gutters full of urine & excreta

Open gutters with proud chaos

Crafting narratives of chaos

Of our biography of chaos

Our apocalyptic roads

Our uncouth drivers

Our depraved driving

Sanitizing chaos

Incentivizing chaos

Nativizing organized chaos

Evocative appreciation of chaos

Solemnizing chaos at intersections

Ritualizing chaos at cruel junctions

Drivers diversifying chaos

Passengers celebrating chaos

Police surrendering to chaos

Pedestrians saluting chaos

Politicians nativizing chaos

Oh! Chaos on our roads

Our biography of chaos

Plying potholed roads

Our cultural touchstones

Theatrical steering of state

In stolen-wealth SUVs

SUVs in sizzling potholes

Steering on chaotic roads

Our muse of development

Nurtured in cargo-cult mindset

Followers of a cruel religion

Of stolen-wealth SUVs, tractors

Of SUVs that meditate potholes

Ah! Roads with man-made lakes

Surpassing Korle for goons

SUVs sailing for space

Space in Korle-like potholes

Hawkers on potholed roads

Street-kids meandering all

For a share of the stolen wealth

From the pot-belied politicians

The haves-in SUVs, tractors

That ply pot-holed roads

Chaos on our roads

Roads of graft and greed

Built by non-specialists

NDC/NPP Chiefs as contractors

Builders of ramps of death

Of structural autopsy of deaths

Deaths on our roads

Celebrating deaths on roads

Our biography of Chaos

So Today

MPS

Ministers

Chiefs

Engineers

Bankers

Prophets

All officials of organized chaos

The elitist armed-robbers

Live in SUVs, on tractors

SUVs on the eaves

On eaves of broken roads

In SUVs that navigate chaos

In tractors that build chaos

Tomorrow

Potholes will be lakes

MPS

Ministers

Chiefs

Engineers

Bankers

Prophets

Officials of organized chaos

Will live on ships, boats

To sail in potholed roads

Elitist armed robbers

In SUVS, Ayariga tractors

Snaking around potholes

Lakes in our roads

With toads of iron-mounted stones

Lakes in our roads streaming away

Into gutters full of urine & excreta

Open gutters with proud chaos

Crafting narratives of chaos

Of our biography of chaos

*Akadu N. Mensema, Ph. D., is a nationalist Denkyira beauty. She is a trained oral

historian cum sociologist and Professor in the USA. She lives in Pennsylvania with

her great mentor and teaches Africa-area studies at a college in Maryland. In her

pastime, she writes what critics have called “populist hyperbolic, satirical”

poetry. She can be reached at akadumensema@yahoo.com

Columnist: Mensema, Akadu N.