AGĨKŨYŨ/ MAASAI BATTLES (EARLY 1800)

Cows of the Maasai, Masai Mara in Kenya. Scar ...
Cows of the Maasai, Masai Mara in Kenya. Scar on the cow in the foreground is a brand. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Vast territories turned to treacherous battle grounds

Between River Cania and the forested Mountain lands

Nilotes and Bantus, for prestige, tested hands;

In grave battles for supremacy, bitter rivals vied for martial wits.

Clamor for commerce and monopoly of estates was the constant source of rifts

Pastoralist or Agriculturalist, to whom, in the end, would victory shift?

Sharp poisoned spokes at the bottom of camouflaged pits

Plagued, menaced and disarmed the Maasai to the host’s profit

Maasai’s long- broad- bladed spears and bizarre machetes flashing at the tips

Too were no small worries to the Agĩkũyũ   defence,

But the Agĩkũyũ’s Poisoned arrows alas, in the ‘twin rows’ offence

Proved too costly to the Maasai for a fatal score

And decisive in ceasing the protracted warfare;

In the open plains, once,  Nilotes unbound reined

In the highlands, Bantus martial skills soared unchained

Today, why should petty contradictions tween allies be preserved?

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