Ode to Idi Amin… an ungrateful Jew longs for the land of oppression

Author, Gawaya Tegulle. PHOTO/FILE

What you need to know:

  • Would that I could return to the house of bondage, where the honesty of the oppressor in his wickedness is better than the lies and lures of the liberator.

Oh, Idi Amin, when on the 25 of that January, the spectre thou did take, thou wast the Mvule tree that towers; unequalled, unchallenged above a tropical forest. 

Would that the axe from the south that chopped you down had tarried a few decades longer! 

Would that the 11th day of April had waited many years…for I miss you some!

I am the voice of the ungrateful Jew that for the fleshpots of Egypt still does long,

The ungracious Korah who looks at Moses the Deliverer with no less than disdain

I am the ill-advised, yeah, ill-fated grasshopper that jumped out of the frying pan, only to fall into the fire,

Much burnt and blistered, but now much the wiser …and missing you some!

Nearly 40 years into the wilderness, and still no sight of the Promised Land 

Ungrateful and impertinent Jew that I am, how I long for the fleshpots of Egypt!

Why, oh why, did we even leave Egypt, only to keep wandering about the wilderness? 

Can a captive miss his erstwhile captors, and an escaped prey, the snare of the fowler?

Yet here am I, looking back at Egypt… and I miss you some!

Let me kid you not: for a good man thou wast not, thou Idi Amin! 

Thy scythe and sickle did many people grimly harvest, till thy hands were bloody

At the gory tales of thy exploits, many an ear still does tingle 

For mercy, goodness and grace were far from you, 

But after looking about me, make no mistake… I miss you some!

For many were the shrieks of joy that filled the air when out of here you did flee,

When into town, the liberators did walk, ringing the bells of freedom in glee,

Such was the sound of sweet relief, as we welcomed the dawn of a new day 

Ill-advised grasshoppers jumping from the frying pan and right into the fire!

We didn’t know any better…and I miss you some!

Countless were the times I despised the Jews for longing for a return to Egypt

When Moses had, with a great victory, delivered them from the land of slavery

But now I see the folly of deliverance and I extol the virtues of bondage

For needs must, when the devil drives; enough of the wilderness, it’s for Egypt I long

Ah, Pharaoh, my oppressor greatly beloved, I’m missing you some!

 Oft, the oppressor we do condemn and call him a devil fit for hell fire

Till we partake of the bitter morsel called freedom and look back with longing.

Much better the sight of a real sunset, the spectacle of oncoming darkness 

Than the deceitful allure, the sly illusion of a false dawn,

For I look back with longing …and I miss you some!

Oh, how I now long for the snare of the captor, for the fangs of the Pharaoh! 

For I have sampled freedom, and it is as bitter as gall in my mouth. 

I want to spit it out, but my mouth is firmly closed; its hinges nailed in by the high priests of freedom….and I’m missing you some!

Would that I could return to the house of bondage, where the honesty of the oppressor in his wickedness is better than the lies and lures of the liberator,

Where the songs of bondage are sweeter than the songs of freedom; 

Back to Egypt, where the whip of a true enemy than the embrace of false-hearted friends, for I look back with longing… and miss you some! 

Ah, Idi Amin! Would that thou wast still alive! 

For I have tasted the bitterness of freedom and now for your sweet oppression I do long!

I have tasted the pain of liberty, and it is the joy of bondage that now I crave, 

For I look back with longing…and tell you what, I miss you some! 

Mr Tegulle is an advocate of the High Court of Uganda     


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