Forever Young

Forever Young

October 16, 2020 1 By Tonny Ogwa

When the young sparks fear in people, it’s not because of what they are, but rather what they might become.

Two weeks ago, a dear friend of ours, a son of soil, a man we loved and now hate to have loved, kicked the bucket and swarm away in the waters spilled to a land far out of our reach. It was all too sudden because a day before his untimely departure, we were together, him, me and another son of soil, also a man of good heart and vibe. The yellow arrows of the setting sun shot from behind the hills casting an elongated shadow of his motorcycle when he said: ” Village Rover bana, I’ve had a long day, I’m going to freshen up, rest then come back for the Chelsea game at 8pm.” The other friend and I both hate Chelsea so wished Chelsea bad luck and parted.

In a series of events, one thing led to another and the motorcycle skid, screeched, somersaulted or did whatever motorcycles do before they crash, and squash their rider’s head while at it. This young man who hadn’t lived long enough to see the end of a decade twice took rest. Eternally.

We cried. We bawled. We raged. We said the son of soil couldn’t die. He couldn’t die because he was young, he was our friend, we loved him, no one above or below the sky could possibly love him more than we did. The son of soil was yet to get an admission into the prestigious beard gang, he couldn’t die. He was still a fresh comrade, barely two semesters in campus, he couldn’t die. It was unnatural. Children are suppose to bury their parents, not the other way round. He couldn’t die. He was the end to his mother’s maiden. Her first child. The apple of her eye. Her hopes and dreams made flesh. He couldn’t die. He should not die. But what we want or doesn’t want is of no interest to the world, we are too small, the world isn’t.

Today we went to return the son of soil back to his father, the soil. This son of soil was called Elvyn Ongoya. I don’t know what they now call him in the other place, but, I’m sure it’s something that spells astute intellect, radiance and chivalry because that’s exactly what he was. Elvyn as you await our arrival, may you give that other place as much warmth, joy and laughter as you gave us back here. Oh, and your cool dancing styles, teach them a thing or two about Jerusalema dance.

As the red Earth rose to form a mound over the coffin, people begun to wander away, but we hanged on, forlorn and lost. He was gone but right there and then, we knew that Elvyn will live forever young. And one day when we’re old, brittle and grey, with spots on our hands and clouds in our eyes, we will remember him not in a sagging old skin, but as sparkling faced teenager we knew. In our memories, he shall live forever young. Till we join him in wherever place he is.

And we wonder, what he might have became.