The ‘Owambe’ Prayer

Oh! Most mighty! Most gracious! Most braki-braki-shabalala!

We thank thee, O Most kind, Most loving, Most grabalakibaki!

We bring before you this condemned goat, destined for the pot.

Receive his stubborn soul. (Amen!)

Cut short his hours of sorrow. (Amen!)


We are here in the midst of all these witnesses.

We are here in the presence of these chilled bottles.

We are here to rejoice and sing tearful songs.

We are here to be empowered with Dutch courage,

And to be filled with spirits. (Amen!)


Grant that we shall indeed see strange things. (Amen!)

Grant that we shall feel the earth moving beneath our feet. (Amen!)

Grant that the river of lager will not stop flowing even after the band stops playing. (Amen!)

Grant that we shall fall and not be able to rise

Till we see the sun high in the sky! (Amen!)


We commit the empowered musicians into thine hands.

We have paid handsome fees to put empowerment into their hands.

Make them able to deliver on their contract. (Amen!)

So that we shall not have reason to not call them again next time,

Make them strong to deliver on their contract. (Amen!)


At the end of everything, we pray that we shall not run into debt! (Amen!)

We pray that we shall not have to postpone paying our children’s school fees! (Amen!)

We pray that the caterer shall not have to harrass us because her payment is incomplete. (Amen!)

Make our rice sweet! (Amen!) Make the meat tasty! (Amen!)

And by your grace, we shall do this again! (Amen!)


Kunle Oyedele

About the author



1 Comment

Leave a Comment