Entry for the 2017 Crocodile Prize Kina Securities Poetry Category by Steven Mel.

Steven Mel is from Jiwaka and Simbu provinces. He has a Bachelor of Arts PNG Studies from the Divine Word University. Works in the area of Social Development more the Civil Society Sector.   He is an amateur writer who has been writing poetry since high school. He plans to get published in the future.

Clouds coloured conjuring,
Apparitions from mists descend
Mystical Asaro warriors;
Clay burdened figures, ghostly attired.
Through misty valleyed morns,
They stealthily steer,
Fluidity of fearful motions;
Educing entangled emotions.
Limbs, torsos earthen bleached,
Muscles flexed, caked in clay.
Merciless masks of troublesome terror,
Mudmen stalk in spooky splendour.
Bamboo pincers; arrows poised,
Arms swept, weightlessly swirled.
Wondrous imagery; ageless mystery,
Of Ancient Asaro pedigree.
Walking hitherto in pilgrimage,
Vintage regalia and primal norms.
Ancestral legacies,
A thousand years borne.
Enshrouded in clay,
The world has known,
Of mud soaked men
In spiritual trance.
Identities envisaged,
A people’s pride;
When the mudmen’s bilas
Evokes his ghastly dance.

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