International Poetry الشعر শ্লোক ကဗျာ ליבע ਪਿਆਰ өлүм

African Poetry with editor Michael R. Burch

AFRICAN CHILD

 

This is for the child

the colour of a fading shadow

 

who lives at the cold bosom of death, thinking of facing tomorrow

 

and then at dawn

a new death casts her light aglow

 

This is for the child

whose song echoes like the tiring voice of a bellows

 

under the spilled milk

of the evening's beaming moon, they bow

 

for a trigger-happy gun man

in the hood will come with a

blow

 

This is for Africa:

a coffin of mahogany and the perfume of Arabia

 

box her up and let

the children lift her shoulder-high

 

amid nursery rhymes

and glowing eyes

 

Take her down,

mother earth, where the worms are

hungry

 

This is for the African

child hopeless and homeless

 

whose mother wails

over the fallen fence of the household

 

Africa oh Africa

your sun no longer

lights up our paths

 

We are your children

lost in your hardship’s dust

 

This is for all black children,

this is for me.

 

 

 

MY MENTOR AND I

 

In days of my nudity,

when dirt was my little pet,

before I knew myself,

and my guilt . . .

have I adored you!

 

In days of my running nose and addled babbles

when my shabby clothes made me shaggy,

have I kept your portrait,

cleaner than my palm,

above my mat, where my wee eyes can behold

your greys sailing on a long Nile of wisdom.

 

In days of my blooming roses and tales of witnessing              moonlight,

of willie willie and her evil half brothers,

in these days have I adored you.

 

In the days of my innocence, before the world stole it,

you scribbled the ‘Abiku’

in mysterious lines and stanzas;

I read and memorise them like a sacred incantation,

and I wish to be you; like a jealous devil in a luxurious             Eden.

 

I will be you when you submit to the waiting earth;

my hair will be grey and full like a pregnant cloud;

I will be another soyinka from a tribe of the kogi,

where rivers share endless love.

 

 

PAPA

 

Papa was bend and curve like a crescent moon.

He spoke softly but consistently, like the babble of an                adamant baby.

He is wrinkle and veins running all over his crooked body like wiring done by an apprentice electrician;

he is soon ripe for the belly of the obese mother earth, woe unto mother earth!

No flesh to eat this time,

papa died skinny and feeble.

Al-Qassim Abdulsalam Uthman is a Nigerian poet, born in 1992 in Dekina, a local government area of Kogi State, Nigeria. He is a graduate of Kogi State University and currently lives in Abuja, Nigeria, in the western part of Africa. He calls himself the “Bloody Poet” and uses the hashtag #BloodyPoet.

Otukpa!

 

The music blasts from the bar;

Two yards away

The criminal gulps down

Shots of vodka

In a bid to digest the horrors of his act

Only hours ago.

Eyeing the lady of easy virtue

two tables away.

Soon prickly conscience

Will be ejaculated,

Climax for a price.

Crime and lust to be entwined on sheets of obscenity.

 

Away from the bar

On the streets

The slut is unleashed,

Angel of seduction and child of Jezebel.

Face painted to mask her

Innocent past,

With long nails, to prey on men with

Pregnant pockets. Yet willing prey.

 

Breasts ripe and full

Hanging loose, to feed

The malnourished eyes of men,

Feeding their lust.

As wiggling buttocks

Tempt the contrite heart to neglect

The promise of penance

And reap the pleasures of orgasmic lures.

 

Beehive Otukpa! Must stereotypes be proven right?

 

NOTE: Otukpa is a town in Benue State, Nigeria.

 

 

Night

 

You cast a spell of

Darkness on earth

And unleashed the elements of evil

From within.

Light needs resuscitation;

Now your reign is supreme.

The wry luminescence of the moon

Fools me not.

Your grip, I can’t eschew,

Stealthy like a cat.

I can’t tell the figure of a friend from

A nocturnal lord in the dark.

Black, black, blackness.

Mask of evil.

The dead turn in their graves.

The footsteps of lost souls

Chirping, hooting, mewing.

The fabrics of a mysterious garment.

In a mighty stride of hope,

I close my eyes. Sleep . . .

 

Paschal Amuta writes from Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria. He is a biochemist upon whom the Muse has bestowed the ability to paint pictures with words. His hobbies include surfing the internet, writing, and reading. Wole Soyinka is his favorite writer. He goes by the moniker “Muse Son” on the Internet.

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