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In loving memory, 1st Anniversary in Heaven
by John Oryem (S. Sudan)

Mama Abili Khamjan Ambili
(July 7, 1988- November 9, 2022)

A year gone by, preciously stolen from our account
a period of wait,
as if you have just gone to fetch firewood to cook for us.
your daily memories
urges us to wait for you
there is irresistible voice,
a voice so familiar, filling your house,
we missed your infectious smiles that welcome us in your house.

Wednesday, November 9, 2022,
you laid calm, lonely, facing the sunrise
and you waited for the angels to accompany you home among the ancestors,
you stuck to your courage, fearless, undefeated
your strong voice remained intact like the days you experienced labour with your children
when it was time, you took your last breath from amongst us, abruptly
dark clouds hover over us with unsuspected news, then your name shredded from the list of our family tree
the world announced your departure,
like devastating rains that steal moments,
reluctantly we succumbed to the news.

Mama Chanwat, who will inherit your indomitable trademark
as we await for your reunion with us from a distant land?
distant land of no return!
since you left us, the separation is timeless, lonely and nostalgic amidst the sun that rises and sets with your memories.

as you join the ancestors, we release you from our hearts like a partridge,
you belong to the ancestral and saintly household
when your candle is lit, we shall close our eyes, and hug you in silence and with love.

(Copyright © 2023 excerpts from Abili, Unblemished Life by John Oryem, November 9, 2023, Johannesburg, Republic of South Africa) Submitted 10/26/2023

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