Mali! Dust off your koras
And let your ancient songs rise.
Turn your palms, leathered from
Farming and toil into cymbals of joy.
Mali! Clear your throat with milk
From your many fattened cows
And let your songs rise again;
Till drumming and dancing fill our huts.
Mali, your ancient kings won’t return.
Your scattered children won’t converge
Until fresh lullaby sneaks out of your tight lips
And resurrects their sleeping spirits.
She who runs today, once slept and dreamt.
Mali, your breath assures me you live but sleep.
Wake up Mali. Let your ancient blood boil
Till the greatness we see in our dreams come true.
Mali. Rise. Mali. Sing. Mali. Mama. Mali.