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Odyssey from Africa 15c

Odyssey from Africa 15c (Southland, continued...)

Being rich in skill and talent
He soon gained the feel and measure 
Of the boomerang’s employment 
Sent it arching near the treetops 
Then returning where it started
As the king looked on, admiring 
“I will surely take this wing-form
On our journey to the Southland”
Han prepared to give the king the
Boomerang, but he refused it
Saying that instead his scholars
Would inspect and test the object 
So that they themselves could make it
Learn the method of its forming 
“Now” King Ptolemy continued 
“Let me take you to my shipyard”

Han and Kwona and the children 
Then were guided by the monarch 
And his retinue of warriors
Out beyond the palace gardens 
Through the streets of Cannabarro
Where they crossed a crowded market
Thronged by farmers and by merchants 
Loudly calling out for business

“Get some charcoal for your barbie!”
“Finest jars of amber nectar!”
“Come and get your liquor quicker
From the fellas at the cellars!”

And on Han and all his family 
This all made a great impression 
They had never seen a market 
Of such size and such aggression 

In promotion of the produce
Or such wonderful assortment
Of the items being traded
There were clothing and utensils

Myriad in form and purpose
Fruits and vegetables and fishes
Flesh and bone and living creatures
Dogs for working or for leisure

But the King still led them onwards
Trying to avoid distraction
Past impressive streets and houses
Walking downhill to the sea front

Soon they walked on open grassland
At the margin of the city
Where some menfolk were engaging
In a sporting recreation

Running up and down the meadow
Throwing back and forth an object
Like a coconut in profile
Calling out with shouts and laughter

Kwona and her daughter Lisa
Were transfixed in their attention
At the clothes these men were wearing
At their short close-fitting trousers

Moving on, the royal party
Reached at last a busy quayside 
There were ships of all descriptions 
Fishing boats and trading barges

Being loaded and unloaded
By assorted groups of workers
They continued swiftly onward
Till they reached the Royal Dockyard 

That was closed to private vessels
And to fishermen and traders
Ringed by fences and a gateway 
Through which now they made their entrance 

And at once they saw the vessel
Saw the ship the king was building 
In its size by far the largest
Han had seen in all the kingdom

Copyright © | Year Posted 2018

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