Saturday, 26 March 2016

Ours To Plough, Not To Plunder by Niyi Osundare is an agricultural poem using the rewards found in planting and harvesting as the reasons to encourage people to embrace farming. Based on natural phenomenon and the words of the poet, farming is a very useful investment. The poet or the poem speaker is of the faith that people's engagement in agriculture and farming will divert their attentions from wrong implementations of the huge material rewards the Lord God have kept in the soil for humans benefit.

The poem has the following theme: (1) the God's treasure in the soil (2) the benefits of farming to humans (3) humans' choice to use or waste

The stanzaic structure of the poem is a free verse of unequal stanzas. The poet was preoccupied with the need for people to embrace farming, so he used the third person point of view in expressing his feelings.

The poem very evident poetic devices in the poem are repetition, alliteration, ant
ithesis, metaphor, etc. "The hoe is her barber" is an example of both metaphor and personification. "The dibble her dimple" is an example of both metaphor, alliteration and personification. "Ours to work not to waste/ Ours to man not to main" both lines are example of a parallelism with embedded antithesis. "Let's put a sun in every night" symbolizes the practice of mining at night. Judging by the use of figurative terms and the grammatical choice of the poet, one can conclude that the diction of the poem is a very easy one. It must also be noted that the poet used a persuasive tone to encourage the love for agriculture and mining.

The Poem
The earth is our to plough and plant
The hoe is her barber
The dibble her dimple

Out with mattocks and machetes
Bring calabash trays and rocking baskets
Let the sweat which smells earth roots
Relieve heavy heaps of their tuberous burdens

Let wheat fields raise their breadsome hands
To the ripening sun
Let legumes clothe the naked bosom
Of shivering mounds
Let the pawpaw swell and swing
Its headward breast

Let water spring
From earth’s unfathomed fountain
Let gold rush
From her deep unsearchable mines
Hitch up a ladder to the dodging sky

Let’s put a sun in every night
Our earth is an opened grain house
A bustling barn in some far, uncharted jungle
A distant gem in a rough unhappy dust

This earth is
Ours to work not to waste
Ours to man not to main
This earth is ours to plough, not to plunder.


Samuel C. Enunwa aka samueldpoetry
(the Leo with wings flying)


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