About a boy named T. Jeffery Written By: Bernard Gbayee Goah
By the restoration of my memory a flashback dear to me has troubled my mind today.
I may not have welcomed it fully when it actually happened.
I may not have felt the true meaning of its impact on me.
I might have said to myself “This is too traditional for me.”
I may have even mentioned to my friends “I hate anything that is not modern,”
Whatever the case, there was a place deep down in my heart for a boy named T. Jeffery.
A young boy born in a very remote town in Liberia
A town that came to be known as Pour Town
A town where the most educated brains of Grand Gedeh emerged
A town where brains galloped away, to far far away lands across the oceans.
In the name of seeking knowledge and good life,
Neglecting the very town that gave birth to their very existence.
The boy T. Jeffery was not among those galloping brains,
Yet he was a brain all by himself.
Although he called everyone his friend,
Although known across his entire district
No one ever befriended him.
This T. Jeffery was a Krahn traditional musician.
Town to town he went every weekend,
Taking no cent from anyone on his journey.
All he did was sing for everyone to make merry.
All he did was make his people forget their worries, and dance.
This was his life from day to day.
Then the civil war came.
Smoke from Bazookas and RPGs engulfed the air.
Women and children laid in pulls of blood.Animals and humans ran in the same direction.
Terror himself declared an emergency curfew,
And hunger took over every strata of Liberian society.
Fear and sorrow filled the hearts of the most innocent,
And the entire tribe of T. Jeffery was forced to flee the country.
The boy T. Jeffery also fled for his life as well.
Refugee he became,
In a place unknown to modern man.
Into the deepest jungle of the French Ivory coast fled he,
In a village called Poubli took he refuge.
From village to village he went,
Singing his songs to his people,
Knew he that they were worried.
Mothers and Fathers, Brothers and sisters, Missing friends
All killed by rebels.
He needed to restore the hopes of his people once again,
With songs he restored their hopes.
For what else could he have done, was all he could do.
Fifteen years he sang songs of hope and empowerment.
Empowering over 10,000 refugees,
Of which he himself was one.
Fifteen years comforted he the hearts of his people,
With songs of hope in a foreign land.
Then the war subsided.
And refugees anxiously returned home to Liberia.
The boy T. Jeffery was one of them.
He needed to go back to Liberia,
Along with his people he returned.
Quietly returned he to his homeland.
Once again in his homeland, he continued with his songs of hope and empowerment.
One day T. Jeffery got sick.
Then he got very sick.
Then extremely sick.
But there was no one willing in the entire land to help him,
No one would talk to him,
No one knew him anymore.
Until one day T. Jeffery died.
The boy of whom I speak was a true Liberian.
His legacy though forgotten by those he comforted.
My heart lies with him deep in the soil of Pour Town, Liberia.
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