Memories of Martyrdom
On May 24, 1991, our Independence Day, I asked myself this simple question: who has bestowed us this hard-won independence? And I replied, The martyred and the living. Had it not been for the sacrifice of those dedicated boys, girls, Muslims and Christians, independence could not have been a reality. Therefore, it is the gift of the martyred. They are the liberators (Merhawti) and hence I wrote the lyrics of the song Merhawi in June 1991.
A series of questions flocked into my mind and again I asked myself, How can we feel that the martyred are not dead? An answer flashed in my mind, When the generations live a peaceful life in Eritrea. Another question! Is Merhawi/Merhawit eternal? I produced the answer for this in my poem that was written on February 6, 1992: Aymoten Merhawi, Merhawi/the martyred is not dead!
Merhawi is not dead! From his earth, on his earth, unto his earth, At the plain deserts, At the mountainous hills, Covered with a single stone, Though silent, Deep in eternal sleep, Merhawi is not dead anyway!
At the end of January 2006, the then chairman of the P.F.D.J. central office in Northern Red Sea region, comrade Sayiq Yosuf requested me to compose a song for the commemoration of the Fenkil Operation. The Fenkil Operation took place in Massawa in Feb, 1990. Martyr Tseegai Tekle came to my mind. I figured his smiling face, his generosity, his inspiring character and his exemplary performance. I have already idolized him and I always represent the fallen heroes by him. We give some one like Tsegai the title Adha which means the indomitable and the one who smiles amid of odds. And I wrote the lyrics of the song Adha Nber that was sung by the star singer Helen Meles in February, 2006 during the Operation Fenkil commemoration.
Eternal Glory to our Martys!