For her first appearance since her pregnancy announcement, the singer wore a striking gold ensemble paying homage to Oshun, an important deity in the Yoruba religion.
Oshun, who adorns herself in gold ornaments, is the goddess of fertility, motherhood, love and beauty.
The poem explicitly references Yoruba goddesses Oshun and Yemoja (also called Yemaya), a deity of oceans and motherhood. Both deities are known for their connection with water.
The photos that accompany the poem show the superstar underwater wearing light marigold yellow fabric, a color associated with Oshun.
Beyoncé’s most talked about album has been hailed as a celebration of African culture and Nigerian influences are weaved throughout.
In the video for “Hold Up,” the singer is wearing a marigold-colored ruffled dress as she opens a floodgate. Later in the video she smashes a car window and a fire hydrant in her path with a baseball bat.
Senbanjo calls his art — which is founded on a Yoruba religious practice — the Sacred Art Of The Ori.
“When I work with a muse, the muse, their Ori, and I become one. My art form is physically drawing what’s on the inside, what’s in your soul, and your essence and being; on your canvas, which is the skin.”
“We did a whole Fela album that didn’t go up. It was right before we did ‘4,’” he wrote. “We did a whole different sounding thing, about twenty songs. She said she wanted to do something that sounds like Fela. That’s why there’s so much of that sound in the ‘End of Time.”‘
Special blessing of twins
This isn’t a deliberate nod to Nigerian culture, but Queen Bey is pregnant with twins, or ibeji as they are called in Yoruba, which is of particular significance in Yoruba culture.
The Yoruba have one of the highest twinning rates in the world and twins — which are traditionally named Taiwo and Kehinde — are seen as a special blessing.
Some Beyoncé fans wonder if she’ll follow tradition in the naming of her babies…
We wait with bated breath.