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Bajan Tropes, Barbados Conflicts.
By Segun Ojewuyi

Here in Barbados, I found Akobi. A relentless "first born" who bears proudly his name Kofi in a long trail of honor, stretching from the deep corners of the Cape Coast to the Bajan ports of pink sand and wavy roads of whitewashed lores. He does not sit still. His story burns him on the inside. His African is of the prime clay, unmoved by the quick-sands around him. His outside darkens in beautiful blackness. His face a furrowed landscape in hues of coal from Ogun's anvil. But it is framed by two whites. One white of bite his teeth are white and tight without trite.. The other... his hair is disheveled white - the white of an impatient sage, where "wise" belies rage!

"The best days of my life were spent in Ibadan" says Kofi as soon as the meeting the full council at the Barbados Culture Foundation. There I sat, the mention of my birthplace whipping me back to the beginning conjuring thoughts of providence and histories entwined. But Kofi was going to be a bundle of jolts this day. "I studied at the University of Ibadan with Chuck Mike as my classmate. I was a member of ATAS - the Association of Theater Arts Students Association at Ibadan and I lived in Kuti Hall." He concluded. The room, full of my American company and our Bajan Council of Culture workers were caught in the weave of coincidences as I proceeded to reveal to the room that I too had walked the same walls as this guide of spirit through the conflicts of Bajan history and identity . I was trained at Ibadan, a president of ATAS and lived in Kuti Hall" 

"Africa is despised here in Barbados" Conclude Kofi Akobi. Though I found that hard to believe in a country where many africans came from the Cape Coast and Calabar to this land of indentured servitude and plantation slavery. But a Bajan black sitting opposite me confirms Kofi's discomforting truth. "I am a black Bajan. Though my forebears came from Africa, I have more in common with my plantation masters than Africa. I am a computer scientist and a classical musician and I do not see what Africa has to do with any of what I am" He the folly who must be stopped, loudly posited.

Here in Bajan the Slave Plantation pimps the carnival. The church pimps the carnival. The colony pimps the carnival. Kofi reveals and the days in Barbados conflate wisdom with long days of cultural disease. Wisdom I conclude, is only now trapped at supper with idiocy...bidding his time on this glorious island, wrought of nature's violence. This island brought forth and left behind by the unsatisfied sea, Bajan is the color of hope when the rainbow has just left! 

So we, a traveling troupe in search of tropes of affirmation and new formations must leave for London.


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