Dear Black Child

Dear black child, You will heal
Heal from the scars buried 6 feet
Deep within the pores of your skin
Wounds that festered on your emotions
And shattered your heart into a million pieces
Now your heart is nothing but a broken glass
Learning how to reflect your wholeness
The image of a girl that once loved

Centuries from now,
When the dust is shaped from your bones,
History will tell a tale of courage,
Of a woman who pulled her weight,
Against the odds clawed around her neck,
How from ashes and burning embers
Built an Empire with and sweat,

Your bones will be a blueprint,
A speck of dust igniting generations,
A gene of women who don’t bend to raging winds,
History will tell a tale of a Woman,
A Warrior emerging from within you,
How you faced your fears,
And became a woman emerging,
An open letter when they unearth you,

A testament of weathering storms,
Taking down giants with your love,
You are a promise of resurrection,
Reminding them that red sea parted in your views,
And when you whispered your last breath,
The night spoke the language of love,
Living blueprints in our heart,

Dear Black child,
You are a miracle folded in the form of a woman,
A woman becoming, learning the intricate language of love,
You were born for this sort of heavy lifting,
You were born a part saint, a part warrior,
And you have emerged the Genesis
Of a new breed of women,
A linkage of goddesses

Dear black child,
You are a goddess,
An ancient scripture,
A prophecy lies in your heartbeat,
This revelation is nestled in your palms;
Truly, greatness lies in your loins!
Live it! Breathe it!


Olaoye Adeleye
(C) 2021.

THE YEAR


It started from January
Without a salary
We ate from hand to mouth
Our Landlord sent us out

We spent a lot during Christmas
Now I can’t buy ordinary slippers
My children had to go to school
So I had to sell my working tool

Next month, I lost my job
I was attacked by a mob
I lost my only car
And was constantly in a bar

Next month, my house got burnt
I went to the village and began to hunt
Because of pain and shame, I cried
I lost hope and my spirit died

Until the fourth month
From the grave we came forth
I and a man familiar with suffering
He wasn’t rich but he was so caring

He said, “I’ve taken away your sorrow
Don’t bother yourself about tomorrow
I was crushed for your iniquity
I’ve taken up your infirmity”

He taught me joy in suffering
With hope as his last offering
Now my life has totally changed
The way I see things have also changed
Now my new house is completed
All my children have graduated
I have brand new cars
And I no longer visit bars

I began to act different
Now I don’t need to pay rent
My house is very charming
And I still indulge in farming

I had nothing
Yet I possess everything
To the world I was a fool
But in him was my wisdom full

All because I believed
I definitely achieved
I was also faithful
And that was fruit full

From January to December
There’s a lot of disaster
From January to December
It’s not easy, you grow stronger

Charles Young
©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

You exist not just because you were made

You exist not just because you were made.
You existed in the mind of God long before the world was made.

An idea that sprang to life in the factory of your mother’s womb. Your life didn’t begin at the hospital or where else you were born. It began with God.

I mean, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. How huge is that!

A GIANT OF A MAN YOU ARE! So live from where you first existed.

You are a mind blowing idea from a mind blowing God!

Ijeoma Obi
© 2021

Nostalgia

She said I write but it is not poetic
I guess I just recognize a selling point
Point me to the past I’ll be back at it
That first day I saw Godswill

Mmm


I’m emotional I beg your pardon
The things that connect when you meet a God person
I can at least afford to pay attention

All of that bed dressing
But I am not done with the lesson
Cedars got on stage like “We are the best thing”
Masks on my wall, I forgot to call Kizi

We grew from one location
To going on tour and we’re just beginning
They tell me “Bro, one day you go blow”
I smile and bow a seed will die to grow

I could make an anthem for the kain ship
You guys make me feel so fancy
There are stories that I daren’t tell
Movies make my head swell
Eating cabbage like it’s fresh bread
Being Nigerian is a king thing
I just kill all the dread
Luck or is it grace that I’m mehd
if you don’t walk on water
You’ll be doing so soon
What you are is enough
When it’s time don’t you bloom?

Don’t you bloom?

The Nielquchi
© 2020

John

There was a man who came from God.
His name was John.
He wandered through the wilderness
With nothing on.

He ate whatever crossed his path,
The desert’s gifts,
He never bathed; he had no friends,
Just relatives.

He was a cousin of Our Lord
Through his mama,
And learned the Prophets and Torah
From his papa.

When God told him the time was ripe,
He left his cave,
And went down to the riverbank,
His soul to save.

He preached the coming Kingdom,
Then, full of grace,
He knew the true Messiah when
He saw his face.

“It is my cousin, Jesus!” said he,
In wild surprise,
As Jesus gazed at him with
Burning eyes,

He heard, “This is the end of the
Beginning and
The beginning of the end,
My friend.”

Pamela Urfer
© 2021

Mary’s Cross

Scandal has tingled the villagers’ ears
And engendered the gossip mother fears.
I find her, alone, dissolved in tears
From what she’s heard in the marketplace.

When I go for water, my ears start burning,
As I shop for fish, my feet start turning
To run, but I’m gradually learning
That their hisses can’t rob me of God’s grace.

They tell my father it’s a shame.
They tell my mother she’s to blame.
They whisper to others that I’m a stain
On the high reputation of this godly place.

A swollen belly can’t be hid
Nor the depths of disgrace into which I’ve slid.
Next, my marriage vows they’ll try to forbid
And work to see me exiled from this place.

In the angel’s words it was God I heard
He’s wiser than the scoldings of this world.
I’m told if I faithfully follow His word
I’ll hold the Creator of all time and space
In my arms.

Pamela Urfer
© 2021

Enough

“Madam, would you like anything else?”

No.

I’ve. Had. Enough.

I’m done with this junk you serve on a platter
This sorry excuse of a diet
That I swallow,
To convince myself that I’m eating
A 5 second prayer, one verse of scripture
To convince myself that I’m growing…
I’m sick of it!

I’m tired of your new recipes
Food that feeds on me.
Superficial Christianity with a dash of religion,
Truth served rare with ego stuffings.
Glamorized gospels that are far from good news
leaving me bloated, constipated
full of myself and void of Him.

And what’s with the drinks?
Sweet to taste, but leaves an unquenchable thirst
words promising but empty
incapable of answering life’s burning questions
Don’t you serve Living Water??

And why is your food so costly?
your charges are outrageous!
My relationship with God, My peace, My joy, My destiny is too high a price.

So I’m sorry Mediocre Christianity
I won’t be having any more.
I’ve. Had. Enough.

Damaris Akhigbe
(C) 2020