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It starts with a little 6 year old girl named "Jellee" (pronounced "jelly")
from Liberia, Africa (on the western coast) -
and ends when she is about 18 and having changed her name to Veronica.
I personally interviewed Veronica and helped begin writing her biography
which she is planning to entitle "Blooming From Roots".
I name this poem the same.
I kept this poem fully factual
(and should be appropriate for the younger readers as well).
I have written it in 'first person' in present tense with permission.
I wish to thank Veronica (Jellee) Gabor for giving me permission
to publish this poem for my readers.
I hope you enjoy "Blooming From Roots".
Blooming From Roots #1 of 3
The night is very peaceful. Stars twinkle in the sky.
While God creates the beauty, man destroys - but why?
A-boom! Boom! Boom! A-bang, bang, bang! A-pop, pop, pop! Rat-a-tat-tat...
Our village undefended! The horror starts like that.
What is going on? I'm only six years old. Gunshots echo through the air!
Yelling, screaming - orders barked. Bullets everywhere!
As fireworks, but louder - those AK-forty-sevens -
A-bang, bang, bang! A-pop, pop, pop! The booming shakes the heavens!
The rebels swarm like bumble bees! The terror snatches breath.
They frighten all the villagers. They sting us with their death!
They scare me so. I try to run. One catches me off-guard.
He slaps me and I start to bleed. He hits and kicks me hard.
They seize my father, torture him. They frighten me a lot!
They grab his arms, behead him there - and kill him on the spot.
The rebels move so swiftly! I'm just a little child!
My mom is screaming. I am too. These murderers are wild!
Two more hold my mother down - they kill as if a game!
"Shut up!" the rebel yells at me, "...or you will get the same!"
Oh, how I squirm and wiggle! He's holding me so tight.
He hurts my arms. I cry and scream! I am too young to fight.
He hits me hard with his big gun. It slams me to the ground.
He swears that I will get the same if I make one more sound.
Shocked, I am. I'm terrified. My friends still unaware -
of what is really happening. Is this a bad nightmare?
I scramble up and start to run - past one hut, then another.
Oh, will he kill me as he did my father and my mother?
(continued on "Blooming From Roots #2 of 3 -true story poem)
©2012 louis gander / www.ganderpoems.org
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