By Danai Chirawu

The Yellowman with teeth the colour of the sun and hair glistening like polished gold stood in front of the masses, at that time he was unsure of what to tell his little people. The little people were different sizes of small with voices so big and uvulas so pink and bruised. You could distinctly notice such finer details because of the way they spread their teeth apart, yelling from the soul of their lungs in unison like it was the chorus of a popular song. He could hear their pleas and did not understand why they were constantly on their knees. ‘Are they not hungry,’ he wondered as he watched their little feet stomp the much too dusty pavement; well at least it used to be a pavement. Yellowman in his yellow suit and red cane demanded that they be silent before he delivered his much anticipated message. At this point his head was reeling from all the introspection and mind searching. He felt like he was in a game of hangman and all letters were wrong- why could he not form a cognitive statement, he wondered. ‘It must have been that long flight clogging my brain pipe; they ought to put bigger beds on the plane,’ he thought a little too loudly. The fact that he stood in front of the people with no valid answer to their questions boggled his usually brilliant mind, surely there was something those engines in that noggin could churn up to silence that irritating song. Mid thought another question landed on his brain, he wondered why they all sang the same song. Why did they sing the same song?

It was amusing how this once timid little colony had somehow united in this unwelcome ensemble, chanting for hours like slaves in a cotton field leaving echoes bouncing off all corners of the village. Their piercing voices left an unbearable ring in your ear as if each note was taking turns to play the eardrum. Never has there been a more unwelcome sensation, but after all Yellowman had endured worse. He had dodged grenades and slept while hanging in trees to give these tone deaf people their land back. An old foe called Giant had once usurped the throne but he too could not escape the wrath of the red cane. Years later Yellowman could still hear the screams of the little people perishing under the wrath of the Giant and years later he still made sure they would not forget. Yellowman unfastened his top button while trying to gather the little idea that had crawled in his head; he didn’t want his tight shirt to defer the thoughts travelling from his brain to his lips. It would be a few minutes before he could deliver this lukewarm message because of the amount of time it took to calm the masses down. He wiped his forehead with the handkerchief that was peeking from his left trouser pocked and began…

‘My people will never be a colony again!’ he bellowed, and before he could finish his much too calculated speech the little people with their little voices and their miniature bodies started to sing. He, with the confusion of a new born lamb adjusted his microphone as if to ward off the deafening noise and attempted to further his speech. ‘My peopl—e shall never be…’ and once more like a pack of rabid wolves, the little people started to sing. He looked around for aid and all he received were weak shrugs and forced claps from his entourage. He held on to the pulpit as his legs were giving out and managed to gather his composure just in time for his partner to walk up to him and whisper softly in his ear. She with lips coated in diamonds and a head dress that sparkled like an open chest of pirate treasure held on to his fading body and began to speak. ‘IF THEY DON’T HAVE BREAD; GIVE THEM CAKE.’

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