Wednesday, 28 August 2013

The Old Kano

I listened to the story of grandma
The woman with grey hairs
And experienced tongue
So as to learn
Her story painted to me
The old Kano of yesteryears
When the holy [1]Tsunburbura palace
Was erected on the grey [2]Dala hill
With [3]Barbusse as a go-between
The warrior and the hunter
Who conveyed Tsunburbura orders

The story painted
The annual spiritual festival
Of the naked [4]Maguzawa
Who paid homage and prayed to Tsunburbura
They believed in her protection
As she bestowed luck to their wars

I painted the story
As the Emir Aliyu Yaji
Brought the mortal Tsunburbura down
New blood was infused
Into the vein of the ancient city
Kano is no longer evil
The [5]Habe put Kano in order
[6]Rumfa stood as Jupiter
In the universe of development
With his twin spears in his hands
To raise Kano to its peak
Like a glistering river
Kano invites visitors
Its name has adorned the savannah

As time passed
I painted the story
The elephant was too strong
Destroying its source of plants
Danger upon danger arose
Like the burning of Troy
The great [7]Alwali was wrecked
The new [8]sarewa was heard
Fulani sing the songs
Against the Habe
Who had a murderous look
Malam Sulaiman received
And fixed the [9]Fodio flag
In the Kano of hope

Kano cried again
Arrows fell as August rain
Men upon trembling horses ran
Swords crossed in rivalry
With the blood of hatred
It was Kano civil war
The war with no refuge holds 
[10]Yusufawa against [11]Tukurawa
They fought to the death
My painting was red and red

A new lion emerged
With a roar of strength
His star outshined the master
It’s [12]Alu mai Sango
The Asoka of Fodio Empire
His roar echoed in the savannah
With a terrifying sound
That felled mahogany trees
With his pointed sword
The story painted suppression
Kano arose at dawn
Kneeled and bowed
To the white-eared one
Indirect rule was imposed on her
The new economic role was diffused
With the stench of colonialism
Rail lines were connected to the ocean
To move what was good for them
I painted and painted in style

I painted the new Kano of colours
With [13]Sarki Alhaji renowned for his talent
To synchronize tradition and modernity
Kano balanced in its development
All the gates of Kano are opened
For the good visitors
Those who make Kano proud
To boast the spirit of its commerce

The star of Kano
Metamorphosed to a new shining star
As Dr Ado Bayero arrived
Kano outshined its contemporaries
It captivating monarchy 
Always goes with modernity
Kano is always
A land of milk and honey
With a calabash of nuts for all
May Allah protect Kano and the [14]Kanawa
12th March, 2012

[1]Tsunburbura,         Deity in pre-Islamic Kano

[2] Dala,                     A historical hill in Kano city

[3] Barbushe,              Leader in pre-Islamic Kano

[4] Maguzawa,           Hausa pagans

[5] Habe,                   Indigenses of Kano
[6] Rumfa,                  Former Emir of Kano

[7] Alwali,                   Former Emir of Kano

[8] Sarewa, Beagle

[9] Fodio,                                   Usman Fodio         
[10] Yusufawa,                          The followers of Emir Yusuf

[11] Tukurawa,                           The followers of Emir Tukur

[12] Alu mai Sango,                   Former Emir of Kano

[13] Sarki Alhaji,        Former Emir of Kano (Abdullahi Bayero)
[14] Kanawa,            Citizens of Kano

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