A new country has been born. Ra!
New lines have been drawn in the sand. Ra!
A brave new flag has been designed. Ra!
Already the generals have aligned their forces. Ra!
Streams of foreign dignitaries jet in. Ra!
The choreography of ceremonials begin. Ra!
The brass bands make their play. Ra!
Politicians line up to have their say. Ra!
Fireworks rip up the sky. Ra!
Polite applause, away the visitors all fly. Ra!
A new tented city has grown.
Long queues stretch into the dust.
Sticklike figures shuffle through the ooze
Of open sewers. At the end of the line
A handful of maize, a cupful of water
To gratefully toast the new day in.
Almost lost in cacophony, a thin scream
Emerges. A young mother gives birth.
Two men with shovels prepare
The cradle where soon her stillborn son
Will be swaddled in Mother Earth.