Sunday, April 03, 2016

English Lesson in Djenné

I guess I will write something about Keita's last days soon but for now just a word from Djenné to where I returned last Tuesday with Keita's three children for their last days of Easter holiday. They left today for Segou and school tomorrow.  More of that too soon..
In Djenné life has the unsettling characteristic of continuing as if all was like before: the watering of the garden plants still continues at four thirty, the Djenné market will be in full swing tomorrow, even the studio is up and running and people are talking and laughing. My old reflexes are still there to call Keita in the morning and in the evening and I find myself reaching for the phone and then being brusquely taken back to reality  once more:  he is gone, there is no phone that will reach him.

Karamogo (teacher, Bambara), or Historien as we used to call him, had prepared a lesson in honour of Keita on Saturday for his little group of English students that gather here at the hotel twice a week:

"Saturday April 2nd 2016
Survival Dialogue:
Moussa: Ali, you look sad today.
Aly: Yes, I’m very sad today.
Moussa: Why are you sad today?
Aly: Don’t you know our Friend, our nice man, our kind man is dead.
Moussa: Who is that man?
Aly: Mr. Keita- Sophie’s husband.
Moussa: Oh, my God-my God.
Aly: But before to die he has spoken his last thing to his kind wife Sophie: Sophie!
So now Keita is in the paradise."


Blogger David said...

Well, that simple but oh so eloquent dialogue brought tears to the eyes.

10:54 PM  
Blogger Tabor said...

Yes, that is what it is like. I wanted to call my father and check on him and for the longest time I realized there was no one to call. May the routine and beauty of Djenne Djenno people and place help you through this time.

11:17 AM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Beautiful dialogue. Tears, indeed!

And, of course, Wordsworth:

Surprised by joy—impatient as the Wind
I turned to share the transport—Oh! with whom
But Thee, long buried in the silent Tomb,
That spot which no vicissitude can find?
Love, faithful love, recalled thee to my mind—
But how could I forget thee?—Through what power,
Even for the least division of an hour,
Have I been so beguiled as to be blind
To my most grievous loss!—That thought’s return
Was the worst pang that sorrow ever bore,
Save one, one only, when I stood forlorn,
Knowing my heart’s best treasure was no more;
That neither present time, nor years unborn
Could to my sight that heavenly face restore.

2:58 PM  
Blogger Elisabeth F said...

Oh Sohpie, you make me cry, me too.

2:14 PM  

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