“The Explorer” by Chinua Achebe

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Like a dawn unheralded at midnight it opened abruptly before me-a rough

circular clearing, high cliffs of deep forest guarding it in amber-tinted spell.

A long journey’s end it was though how long and from where seemed unclear,

unimportant; one fact alone mattered now-that body so well preserved

which on seeing I knew had brought me there.

YoungChinuaAchebe

The circumstance of death was vague but a floating hint pointed to a disaster in

the air elusively. But where, if so, the litter of violent wreckage? That

rough-edged gypsum trough bearing it like a dead chrysalis reposing till now in

full encapsulation was broken by a cool hand for this lying in state.

chinua achebe

All else was in order except the leg missing neatly at knee joint even the white

schoolboy dress immaculate in the thin yellow light; the face in particular

was perfect having caught nor fear nor agony at the fatal moment. Clear-sighted

with a clarity rarely encountered in dreams my Explorer-Self stood a little

distant but somewhat fulfilled;

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Behind him a long misty quest: unanswered questions put to sleep needing

no longer to be raised. Enough in that trapped silence of a freak dawn to come

face-to-face suddenly with a body I didn’t even know I lost.

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R.I.P Chinualumogu Achebe

November 16, 1930 –  March 21, 2013

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2 responses »

  1. Deeme nu o!   I’m expecting a baby soon. And the baby’s name shall be … Chinualumogu in remembrance of a departed role model Chinualumogu Achebe. But there seems to be a snag about the meaning of Chinualumogu. Someone gave me two interpretations as follows:   1.       Chinualumogu = May the Chi fight for me 2.       Chinualumogu = The Chi has fought for me   Taken in the right context, both interpretations seem appropriate. Any suggestions?  Anizoba

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