Salia Says…

Bimbe & Piye_scoop-net and fish basket

The country Sierra Leone has become bimbe-fishing-water;(1)

It’s now a dammed poisoned stream.(2)

Were you to wade in with an empty fish basket

You’ll only climb out when you’ve filled it…

Thus has the land become a tangled bimbe;

It’s now a ravelled heddle.

There’s nothing to be done; no way to mend it.

(1) Bimbe is a circular net for fishing in streams.

(2) “Tawu ya,” the phrase used by Salia, means “tawu water.” Tawu (or “tao”): the fruits of a certain tree which, when dry and put in a dammed section of a stream, produce narcosis on fish. Fish then float to the surface and are “harvested.”  These fruits can be poisonous.


Posted on March 15, 2015, in Analecta and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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