THE TROUBLE â€“LOVER.
Ojo is his name, Ojo the trouble â€“ Lover.
He loudly calls to Trouble when itâ€™s passing by,
Inviting him to come into his home and spend some time.
With his arugog, a hook â€“tipped pole,
He hooks Disquietâ€™s feet and makes it halt perforce,
That he may have the pleasure of its company.
When he finds in his way a tangled coil
Of trouble rope, he knowingly puts a foot in it
And gladly drags it on with him.
He invites a good-for â€“ nothing person to his house,
Just for love of quarrelling.
Heâ€™s a reckless rascal through and through;
He hardly hesitates before he knifes
A person who does not agree with him,
And when eâ€™er he hears a quarrel going on,
Or sees some people hard exchanging blows,
He tries to find out what has caused the ire-
Whatever lies at the bottom of the case.
Heâ€™s as frightful as the Iron god, for
He sometimes runs about in the streets
Holding high aggressively a glittering axe.
If a boy is mischievous and his mother likes this fact,
We owe the neighbours sympathetic greetings oft,
For the trouble which the boy daily puts them in.
True to type among the mischief of the trouble Loverâ€™s doing
Are these: â€œI will marry that girl,â€� he says,
â€œI will marry her unfailingly,
No matter to whom she has already been betrothedâ€�.
He is fond of marrying wives of other men,
And so he often finds himself in hell at home.
For sometimes his stolen wives are past mistresses
In the art of domineering over husbands, of all kinds.
For instance, he once married Shangoâ€™s wife,
That is, the God of Thunderâ€™s spouse,
But in his house she made him ill at ease
By belching fire from her mouth wheneâ€™er she spoke.
He often proves as obstinate as Mortar was
When fussily he ran to the Mortar-Pounding Square,
In the town of Yampounding â€“ Speciality,
And said, â€œI will become the Oba here,
I will ascend the throne, no matter who objects,â€�
His bosom friends tried hard to make him change his mind.
â€œNo! No! Donâ€™t force your way to gain the Obaship!â€�
again, Mortar stubbornly refused the advice,
he still insisted on becoming king.
At length, indeed, he did ascend to the throne.
Then he regrettingly experienced that hard fact
That â€œUneasy lies the head that wears the crwn.â€�
Mortar can never have rest and peace of mind,
Because of several of the laws in vogue among the people there:
â€œIn Mortarâ€™s absence, no woman Shall pound any yam,
In Mortarâ€™s absence, no powerful, pounded medicine shall be madeâ€�.
Calls for Mortarâ€™s services were numberless,
And he suffered diverse agonies in consequence.
Red pepper berries stung his eyes,
They also stung his mouth and nose,
And made him feel uncomfortably hot
Within his stomachâ€™s walls.
His ears were split, a hole was bored through his chest,
And, at last, his entire frame was split in two.
Itâ€™s the Trouble â€“ Lover who carries home from farm
A dead bush-fowl, despite his knowing very well
That itâ€™s a widely-held belief among his class
That this act will make evil spirits kill
His mother. Or compel his father ascend
The Eldersâ€™ Hill.
And faintly, itâ€™s the Trouble-Lover who tells you,
â€œI want to sit with youâ€�.
If you reply, â€œThere is no room,â€�
He will retort, â€œSure, thereâ€™s room for me to sit
On the summit of your noseâ€�.
Such is the Trouble â€“ Lover;
For him, there is no rest, day or night.
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