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Showing posts from November, 2012

THE VOTER (a sonnet of sorts)

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You are the fool that sold his people for crumbs: You stole their hopes, deceived their eager thumbs! ... I have eaten the moin moin together with the wrapping leaves And unsweetened akamu that never passed through sieves! I have eaten boiled groundnut with the tasteless shells At the compelling impulse of wicked hunger spells! I have used water and salt to cure stomach aches And ice block in fist, I have fought recalcitrant headaches! Diarrhea I have cured over with raw akamu from Mama Risi, For even if I could get the money, do you, here, any hospital see? ... So when you come to me now, smiling like a circus Gorilla (One moment away from the comforts of your Villa), And you talk to me of sweet nothings, I listen mute, For I can play only discordant tunes on my flute.

MAN'S FOLLY (an earth poem)

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Man said… I shall make plains Out of towering mountains And, without sweat or pains, Erase rivers like mere stains. ...and he does! He whispers... I shall gather gold, Dig deep into the Earth And raid its strongest holds For all that has worth. ...and he does! He shouts... I shall make forests Out of dry deserts' sands, Give 'Him' pointed breasts And 'Her' sperm glands. ...and he does! He cackles... I shall usurp the creator: Make donkeys like horses, Make pets out of predators And tame nature's forces... ...and he does! But... As his evil mind plots And his skilled hands craft, His looted Earth goes to rot. Yet, he continues, proud and daft! ...Oh, yes, he does!

WORDS

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Words are not expensive So I can afford to spend them on you Without being apprehensive. But then mere words, cheap Could steal a well guarded heart Or break one, chip after chip. "I hate you" could end a life Just as a casually whispered "I love you" Could turn a girl into a wife! So though words are inexpensive And I desire to spend them on pretty you I'll not, lest you be apprehensive.

YAKORI

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Yakori I hear your name It echoes a thousand times But remains the same. I float in its sound Like a boat at sea, lost without a compass And whirled round. I shall take it And make sweet music to match My heartbeat! I am armed Ready for the battle in which No one is harmed... To make your name The right of my lips!

…ON A QUEEN'S BIRTHDAY (for Maureen Onochie)

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This day the calendar with turn: As you celebrate That glorious day you were born. ... You rouse a poem from my fingers: It shall be a lyric, Call me the drummers and the singers. Bring the cows, slaughter the rams Tap the palm trees And dig out all the yams in the farms. Let all come here, we shall feast Till the break of dawn And our noise shall reach from North to East. Open your throats, and scream out loud, "Happy Birthday Maureen!" Let our voices part these floating could. ... Daughter of the king, bride of a Lord, I salute you And pledge to you my poetic sword!

I KNOW A PLACE

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I know a place- Where Camels prance and tumble through the eye Of blunt needles and none asks how or why. But all know. They see the needle's bloated eye, Angry, they say nothing. Afraid, they ask not why? I know a place- Where the sheep perish under the Lion's touch, Standing in the pen under the shepherd's watch! And they marvel not. Did not the Shepherd's hand Open the gate? Now the Lion does rule the land! I know a place- Where the fingers that smeared the papers of fate Starve at the hands of them that hold the plate And if their hungry mouths do angry words throw, They'll live not to hear the morrow's cock crow! I know a place- Where the price of wisdom is but a rusty penny Yet foolishness abounds and the wise be not many. For the wise ones have eaten the fruits of silence And the foolish rule with the wisdom of pretense! Can we not make a place- Where the glitter of smiling teeth light up the skies And all eat the apples of T

FORGIVE ME LORD (prayer of a contrite heart)

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Forgive me Lord, for I have spoken Where the balm of silence would suffice. I have snared darkened paths for a token And my tongue has sown pain for a price. Forgive me for I ate the kernel of silence Where words would have paid the debt of a life. A life is lost by the sword of my pretense: I butchered a soul, with silence' formless knife. Forgive me, for I have fed my errant ear With words drunk and heavy with lust. Yes, I drank them like sweetened beer – So now, I roam now in the wilderness, lost. Forgive me for I heard and listened not When, for my coins and crumbs, many wept. I spared them not a a single passing thought, Though a thousand loaves in my barn I kept. Forgive for my eyes have sought, once and again, The flash of flesh, the swing of lively swells. I am a pig that wallows in the smell of drains! Lord, take me once again to the washing wells. Forgive me for the times I looked away, While any evil one fouled the waters of peace. I turned

OBAMA (a victory poem of sorts)

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Obama! O nly those who believe In their dreams of dark nights Can the laurel of victory receive. ... B ring out the drums And beat a tune for our legs, Rhythm to bring to life our fat bums. A hh, sweet verdict Of eagerly thumbing thumbs! Where are those that did failure predict? M itt is muffled, The Oval Room retained And Obama's hair unruffled. ... A fter all is silent And the victory songs are over: Repay the trust which we willingly lent!

LOVE?! (for Gerri)

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Love?! Is this this love? Wanting What is taunting; Hoping For what is eloping; Facing What is effacing; Seeking What may sicken? I do not know. Still, I'll let the feeling grow!

Wooing REBECCA, who hates Poetry (for Rebecca Effiong Okon)

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Wooing REBECCA who hates Poetry... I met a damsel named Rebecca Who has the face of an angel sent from heaven. Now I'm hoping she's not a heart breaker ...Because she's got me thinking of her 24/7! Alas, my Rebecca loves not poetry And her ears sway not for flowery words. But then my words are not flattery, Concocted to bind her heart with cords. Someone tell me how to breach her heart, Tell me how to make words melt her metal wall. Tell me where her heart's hidden path Lies. So I can make her heed my earnest call! Maybe I should rhyme a smiling Sun, Make the wind hum a rhythm of stricken souls, Conjure a palace, and make puns That’ll make her fidget on her tender toes? Someone tell me, please, That my soul may find sweet release. ~ KIS