RESCUE

I found rags to cover up
I take the lonely road home
Trying to hold back tears
– Mum will be so angry –
I’m at the front door
And I can’t ring the doorbell
The door clicks open and Mum gasps
– What happened? –
– I don’t know –
I sob and drop to my knees
– Don’t worry honey, let me clean you up –
She picks me up and takes
Me to her bathroom, peels
The rags off me, picks out
The dying petals from my hair
And cleans off the ashes from
My body. She gently sponges
Me and shampoos my hair
I let out the tears
– I’m so sorry Mum –
– It’s okay honey, you’ll be fine –
I nod
– I love you, you know that right? –
I nod
When she is done, I look at
The bathroom mirror and touch
My face. I see the glow come into
My eyes, I smile and clean off my tears
– I love you –

IfiokAbasi Okop
© 2019

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FADE

Spotlight’s on me
I look around
Hoping these eyes
Aren’t staring at me
Suddenly the dress
Mum picked out
Doesn’t feel that
Glamorous anymore
The flowers in my hair
Are falling off, dying
The petals crumble
Colours; white, gold, purple
Slowly fading
No one’s staring anymore
I’m forgotten
But the spotlight’s still on me
I run but the light follows me
I stop and scream
– Let me go! –
I hold up the dress but
It’s in flames
From the hem up,
It turns to ashes
I run into the bathroom
– This is a nightmare –

IfiokAbasi Okop
© 2019

HOPE

I walk into Mum’s room
She has laid out
Another beautiful dress
For me with flowers for
My hair.
– You don’t need a dress to make
You feel beautiful. You are beautiful,
Loved and blessed and that’s something
You have to know, for yourself.
No matter how many times you feel alone
And forgotten, don’t forget to come to my
Front door, this is always Home –

The smile on my face bursts into a beautiful
radiance; the joy of a thousand hearts.

IfiokAbasi Okop
© 2019

FADE

Spotlight’s on me
I look around
Hoping these eyes
Aren’t staring at me
Suddenly the dress
Mum picked out
Doesn’t feel that
Glamorous anymore
The flowers in my hair
Are falling off, dying
The petals crumble
Colors; white, gold, purple
Slowly fading
No one’s staring anymore
I’m forgotten
But the spotlight’s still on me
I run but the light follows me
I stop and scream
– Let me go! –
I hold up the dress but
It’s in flames
From the hem up,
It turns to ashes
I run into the bathroom
– This is a nightmare –

IfiokAbasi Okop
© 2019

GOD’S LETTER

This love that leaves a bitter taste on my tongue
Is the sacrifice I promised I would have for you despite your flaws
You give me your heart in pieces
your brokenness is what I long for
the only thing I want from you

Mending is what I do with you
This process that shows you the love I hope you see
And I hope imprints on you
I do not give your heart back in pieces
I give you this new one, designed to be bound to me

Your gaze makes me feel like
I’m all there is in your heart
I tuck your hair behind your ear
Hold your hand, look at your face
I want you to follow me
I definitely have a lot to show you

IFIOKABASI OKOP
© 2019

THE C.V.

The sparrow’s songs. The jackal’s laughter.
The lion’s roar. Eve’s allure.
Adam’s strength.
One string through them all.
I am the one in all.
I am.
Me.

I’m the greatest artist of all time
Way before Shakespeare conceived Juliet
I had you in mind, my Jewel, yet
Unlike Juliet and her Romeo
My romantic tales with you end with no woes.

I am Lover. I am Writer.
Warrior drenched in blood and sand.
Ten thousand chariots, one rider. Me.
I created light. I am Light Himself.
Within, outside, and beyond time.
I am.

Stand in awe before me. Beauty Himself.
Most Amazing. Most Intelligent. Most High.
I am the One who was, who is,
Who always will be jealous for you.
I just am.

Notice.
That organ beating beneath your rib cage?
It sings my praise.
Each and every breath you take
Is a testimony to my genius. No tease.
And when a strand of your hair falls, I notice.
Note this.

I am the grandest musician ever
See, I set your heart beating
And those strings that play each time you blink
I made those long before
Beethoven ever played Duh Duh Duh Duh!

Duh!
For you, I am haven.
For your problems, I’m a monster.
I’m your most primal craving.
Though you know it not.

Forget Ali. I’m the greatest.
I call into your depths. And you answer.
I cancel your debts.
I destroyed your death.
I’m the depths

With a staff, I divide seas.
Dry rod flowers. Ax floats on water.
The bulldozer. I am.
When I nod, the mountains melt.
The seas? They flee when I breathe.
I do the impossible.
I am impossible.
I am.

I am.
I touch your tongues, and you spit flames.
I make you hot. Make you look hot.
But if you’d rather look warm
Then out of my mouth will I spew you.
Who’re you kidding?
I took the punishments due you.
I call many. Choose few. You.

I am.
I’m Tsidkeneu. I make you new.
I am Creator. Crazy Romantic.
I am Theos. Yah’owah. The Vyevo-Vyavo.
The Lily – not of the valley, cos I made those too.
I’m the Lily. Period.

I am.
I am the beginning. I am the end.
I am each and everything between zero and infinity.
The infinite. The without-which-not.
I am not just God. I’m also the Just God.
The God of justice. The God that just is.

I am.
Yahweh. Shaddai.
Omniscient. Omni-knowing.
Omni-sabi.
Na only Me sabi as e dey do you.

I. Am. God.

Nonso John
© 2019