Returned from the heart-shaped continent,
clocking time, Africans with PhDs taxi forth.*
Those who have crossed and live, look
back, let go traditions for the modern grab.
Their ‘Africa-Independent’ is overrun;
its cities spiked with poverty, rotten
profiteers, jobless youth, the reek of rhetoric…
Banks’ corrupted leaders who front what’s rank.
Neither here nor there, the next wave swims
or sinks, seeks shore adrift in uninviting
harbors, stands out in hurried streets,
their tribal scars exposed still raw, the deep indented
lines of red and blue-black violets; their dark-blood
memories of machets and diamonds.
*African immigrants to the United States are more highly educated than any other native-born ethnic group including white Americans. In 2000, some 48.9 percent of all African immigrants held a college diploma. This is slightly more than the percentage of Asian immigrants to the United States, nearly double the rate for native-born white Americans, and nearly four times the rate for native-born African Americans. See also Reuters article on Africa’s brain drain