Our family has embarked on virtual travels to various countries and regions. To explore these countries and their cultures, we have followed along with the festivals, cooked and eaten traditional foods, learned of traditional handicrafts with hands on exploration, along with many activities to immerse ourselves. Chronicled here are some of these activities.

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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

National Poetry Month - Poetry from West Africa: "Dry Your Tears Afrika" by Bernard Dadié

April is National Poetry Month, so I thought we'd discover a few West African poets. 

The first is Bernard Dadié, from Cote d'Ivoire, a prolific Ivorian writer of various genres. The poem below, translated in English to Dry Your Tears Afrika, (originally written in French, Seche tes Pleurs) was published in 1967. It's a moving poem about Africans returning to their homeland after centuries of slavery and colonialism. This poem was also translated into Mende (a language spoken by 46% of Sierra Leone) and set to music composed by John Williams as a beautiful choral piece for the movie Amistad. You can hear the piece in the video below. 

Translated into Mende, you can hear the beautiful choral piece in the following video:


  1. I loved the poem as I read it, but put to music it is really moving. Thanks for sharing, Marie!

    1. Isn't it such beautiful music? I keep listening to it over and over again.


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