Lost Queen of Pernembuco


Words by Ebun Culwin inspired by the sculpture “Lost Queen of Pernembuco” by Fowokan

Head of nails, past oppression?
Hair of nails, free expression!
Contradiction Cold restriction, collar of steel – muted prediction?
Nothing used and cared for is ever lost
If we want to know the lessons of the future
We need only note our actions in the present.
Relative freedom is never absolution
And is always at risk from a world that enslaves.
Queen of Pernembuco when I look at your elegance,
Serenity poised in strength of purpose
Latin songbirds sing their warning.
Generations do not take for granted the harmony of our labour.
You cannot breed if you do not nourish our seed,
You will not sing our songs if you do not understand
The continuity of effort, communication, validation, appreciation.
Lost Queen of Pernembuco I hear your thoughts.
Riches of your recaptured kingdom are nailed to my torso
Take them, use them
But only if you know how to transpose their harmonies
And make our songbirds sing again.
This is the legend you inherit;
Head of nails, past oppression
Hair of nails, free expression!
Contradiction - cold restriction,
Collar of steel – muted prediction.
Nothing used and cared for……… is ever lost

© Ebun Culwin 2004