Published on February 27th, 2013 | by Art0xic
Rhythm In His Skin
Ladies, gentlemen, art and literary enthusiasts, you’re welcome to Art Stories.
Today, I have for you prose based on this piece of art I began a while back, finished recently and present to you now. The art comes after the story today, for effect. Please, enjoy.
He’s doing it again. I can never get over the mesmerizing rhythm he perspires every time he begins. He pulses and radiates like a live wire, bedazzling everything and everyone in his path with his electrifying excitement. When he starts like this, no matter where we are or with whom, everything else just fades away and all that’s left is him and me. Him, me and his instrument.
He is quite skilled in the way he beats it while simultaneously wriggling this way and that. Jiggling it up and down. Weaving the rhythm in and out.
Many people who have experienced his magic have tried to describe it, or at least tried to attribute it to a source of some sort… they always fall short. The mistake they make is trying to single out one attribute or the other that makes him so special. They mention his stamina, the wildness with which he performs, the way he carries his women along, the amount of practice he puts into his performance, his charm and charisma, his honey-tipped tongue, the bass in his voice…They fall short. They fall short because it’s none of those things. It’s all of those things.
His magic has worked on countless occasions, at many parties, on numerous events. Once he begins to perform, his magic works on everyone, old and young alike. It’s especially beautiful watching the women with their ample bosoms and rotund behinds as they wiggle it to the delight of the men present. It’s a thing of amazement to see the men in turn get excited by the way the women do their thing. They immediately position themselves behind their objects of fascination to receive the full blessings of onílù.
I remember the first time I fell under his spell. The first and last time… The spell has still not been broken. I doubt it ever will. I was walking past the Centre for Culture back in college on my way to rehearsal when I heard the most beautiful rhythm coming from within, it reached out and pulled my soul in. Ayodele stood in the middle of the expansive room surrounded by enraptured people and played his drum. And it was beautiful. With no volition whatsoever, my lips parted and I belted out Olurombi. The performance from two summers past had somehow stayed somewhere in a little corner of my head and Ayodele’s rhythm had awoken it. He immediately switched from the quick beat he was playing and matched my soulful ballad, even as he turned to see where his native language could be coming from in this strange land he was in. Our eyes locked, his brown eyes on my green ones and the spell was begun. The spell was completed later that night as he played his other instrument to slowly rising rhythm and my soul sang out in time beneath him. Magic was born.
Our magic lives still.
Now Ayodele weaves his magic, he grabs those strings and he weaves a magical story, while his oyinbo wife sings a soulful yoruba tune in the background and the people are mesmerised at such magic.
And they dance. How can they not? The magical rhythm and soul make them. If you heard it, you would dance too.