The Three Abstractions

Time like air is boundless, existing independent of us
Helping us take note, employing us
To nurture after our to-do-list
Yet reminding us the risk
of not being
of not seeing
The thought of it as illusion only makes bold the impact on our vision
An endless circle
Old enough to seal life’s chronicles
Yet does nothing to change it
The only certified entity to bridge it.

Love like the sea, is deep
Accommodating everything cold
and warm-blooded
Not seeking its own way
Needs nothing external to become
Countless questions on its existence
Unending thoughts on its purpose
And like the absence of peace
Making monsters of those who go by without it
The true essence of its fragrance waiting always on those who have gone past feeling
to becoming love.

Death, what happens when you’re busy making other plans
Claiming more lives with its rude interruption
The least talked about of all three
Yet with each blow comes a string of thought on time and love
Each seized breath a trail of shadows to your canvas
With more questions than answers
How much time is left?
Is love evident?
What next after death?

Imani Dokubo
©2021

The Forested desert

Its appearance was like a desert
Burning hot and bare in projection
I was already heading that way
So I’d rather take a look at it myself

The closer I got, the clearer I could see
Little green blades spouting out of the seemingly hardened clay
Different colours, shapes and sizes of flowers were opening up
The sound of life was faint but loud enough to be heard.
And the dry air was now blessed with the fragrance of tranquillity

Each step unfolded pleasant surprises;
Suddenly, those blades had grown so tall
Held up by thick brown stands
They spread their Afros like umbrellas against the harsh rays
Colours were lifting with wings and their chirping was high pitched albeit pleasant to the ears

When I looked down, instead of a shadow I saw my reflection
Clearly staring back at me upon the flowing waters – so clear and Pure
It followed a path as though controlled by the melody from a Piper’s pipe
And out of it came cold peaceful air that filled the Forest

Oh, I just called it a ‘Forest
I could vividly remember it was a desert I saw
So dry it could crack a shadow casted on it
Right there, I couldn’t even see my shadow
For the rays of the Sun barely pierced through the thick afro leaves
And oh, what beautiful glitters it formed on the water surface.

It’s a transformation I thought only existed in Disney world
It happened so fast yet slow enough that I could have sworn I was there for hours
But it was so real
So peaceful, so cool, so fertile and so perfect as it appeared before me

“Until the spirit be poured
upon us from on high,
And the wilderness be a fruitful field,
And the fruitful field be counted for a forest.”

It wasn’t just a dream,
it is real.

PearlyThoughtz
©2021

Kings and Pawns

“We’re all Kings and Pawns,”
Napoleon Bonaparte once said,
“We’re all Emperors.”
“We’re all Fools.”

Funny he should say that.
We, like two Kingdoms, square up.
Blacks against Whites.
Decisions. Decisions.

What’s in your hand, sir?

King Pawn to King Four.
Small beginning steps we take
Believing we’re each of us
The only star in our own movie.

But Knight to Queen’s Bishop Three.
Counter moves from counter selves
We sabotage our own efforts
And wonder what’s afoot.

We’re all Kings and Pawns
Though each man in his own heart
Thinks himself different from all.
Superior to all the human-ness.

What’s in your hand, ma’am?

When Bishop takes Bishop,
And we face our true desires
We all deny our deepest truths
For Ego’s sake, for Pride’s joy.

What miserable life we lead
As we approach our end-games
This chessboard cleared of all
And the space evident in all things?

Queen to King’s Rook Three.
Discover Check. And trouble finds us.
Run we may, but hide we can’t.
Now matter where we turn to.

What is this you have in your hand,
Oh fallen man – son of Eve?
What is this you carry in your heart
Oh, daughter of the damned?

If King takes Knight Pawn,
I hope never again will it be said
That we sought for what we knew not
And that all man listened to his own heart.

We’re all Kings and Pawns,
A man once said to the world.
And he – that brilliant devil – he was right.
We’re all – all of us – Emperors. Fools.

Ask not what Mgbeke plans for dinner.
Wonder not when Mgbafo will get married.
What’s in your hand, people of God?
Mind your own business.

Nonso John
(C) 2021

Country of our dreams

They say our country is going to seperate,
They say our country is a failed state,
They say we should run abroad because we will never run towns,
They taught us our suffering in silence ensures a graduation gown;
We were just trying to build a roof, but they said we are all bark and no bite
We were just trying to find some food, but they said we can’t eat what they haven’t…

This journey to the country of our dreams will not end us…
I do not pray for some future blessing, or that one day “e go beta”…No!
All we need is in us.
God, each other, tomorrow…

I do not pray for some wave of death, or that our enemies don’t make it to our comfortable
All we need is in us.
You, each other, tomorrow…
Tomorrow is asleep in the palms, three tiers can’t tear what God has joined together.

I pray that we see ourselves in each other’s eyes…children, all trying to breathe between sobs.
I pray that we accept each other’s differences… together, redefining the meaning of color.
I pray that we find each other, unity, and recognize how successful we are to have gotten here.

All we need is in us.
This journey to the country of our dreams will not end us…because Love is our true beginning.
And we’re just getting started.

The Niel Quchi
© 2020

Mum’s The Word

As I looked up at the assailant
Tears freely flowing like water
With each thrust, he took a bit of my soul.
Something broke, shattered in me
Then he said, “Mum’s the word”

Looked at them, the ones who loved me,
I want to tell them everything I felt
But imagining the disappointment and shame I would bring,
I told myself, “Mum’s the word”

I looked down, this time I’m on top
My eyes dim, my soul dark
I did to another what was done to me
And I said, “Mum’s the word”

I looked down at the weapon
That would keep me forever mum
I sighed and wished
Wished I hadn’t kept mum…

Emenike Chinwendu Victoria
© 2020

Who I Belong To

I’ve heard of the sweat and essence
Of loved ones
Worn in a vial around the neck
Wrapping them in the fragrance of love

I’ve heard of a lady’s favour
Worn on armour
To protect the soldier in battle
And surround them with home

I’ve heard of love marks
Left by lovers
Like dogs marking their territory
Each tiny red welt saying “mine”

I’ve always wanted one of those
I’ve always wanted to feel owned
And belonged to
And belonging to

This craving has drove me into the arms
Of pharaohs and philistines
And mad scientists and thieves
Who plunder and take and take apart

I seemed to have forgotten
I did belong to One
Father, Son and Spirit

I wore the fragrance of His peace
My heart was His favour
Worn around His ‘holey’ palms in pride
His Spirit was my love mark
Shining through my words and my eyes and my prayers
Screaming “Mine!”

When I did remember
My world was alright again.

Ifechukwu Miracle
©2020

What Masks?

The masks represent the pretense we young people of nowadays arm ourselves with in the society.

Even online, and in front of our families;
few of us remain our true selves.

Then there is still the influence of our society on each of us, causing us to choose the version of ourselves that will let us survive.

Only God knows what I really look like.

Niel Quchi
© 2020

You are worth fighting for

For a people yet to find true purpose
For those hurting hoping to be healed
For those hurting, not hoping that they’d be healed
For anyone whose effort doesn’t work out as expected
For that someone who has accepted being unaccepted
For you that has belittled your abilities

For the me that has assumed the front seats are for the bright ones and the back seat has my name on it
The me that suffers from low self esteem
Who say that I’m not worth the life I’m living

Less of myself, less of what I had dreamt
The torment of my nightmares becoming my realities…
My dear,
It was for you that the Messiah got slapped, got mocked
Got those scars
He scars are meant to scare the scarecrows in your path
Your name was part of the names he had in mind for each whip received

You are worth fighting for
An outstanding conqueror
There! I said it!

What scales have blinded the beautiful sight of how God sees you?
What ears? Ephaphtha! Be open!
He him call your name
As a people set out to break these cycles and dominate
You are washed sparkling white with his pure blood

And as Ezekiel Azonwu once said ” Pure blood is not in vein vain”
Have this invade your mind
You are worth the fight!

Azubike Hannah
© 2019