Big Man Politician

Big Man Politician

by Foday Mannah

Distended stomach but ironically not from malnutrition
Accustomed to gluttonous grappling, grabbing and gorging
A protruding belly that’s not a clarion call for a bundle of joy
Instead your ample figure represents pillage and plunder
You mesmerise and sway with muddied manifestoes and pale promises
Gullible throngs gaze up at you as you belch diatribe into microphones
Respected because you speak snow country language well

You come a-calling every five years
Your billowing robes appropriate for your bulbous bulges
European suits do not make a nice mirror for excess weight
Surrounded by senseless subordinates and serpentine sycophants
In the company of willing fledgling followers, eager to please
Red-lipped, like hyenas ravaging a bloodied carcass
Like branded cattle we sway and swoon in your colours

But handshakes do not last forever
And for all our exposed ribcages and gaunt gazes
And for all our compliance and kowtowing
We tend to flourish, rising tall like a sugar cane
Outlasting your excesses, we remain pure
Shake-headed stories to baton down generations
Till the next sleek antelope becomes a rampaging rhino