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

I Am Enough

This feeling of inadequacy is clogging up fears In my throat I’m struggling to breathe in ENOUGH air for a day
I’m struggling to see the light my ART shines in dark tunnels
I’m struggling to see the FREEDOM bursting like light in many hearts

I stare at the stage and wish I were behind the pulpit
Spewing sleek words that must have been dry-cleaned for years
I yearn for the cameras to click on my face as I sashay even though I know my art isn’t a hundred percent

I forget I’m enough at where I am because I take my lessons
That I don’t have to prove a point, I only have to study and write my tests so every day, I can look at the score sheet, at the improving grades
And thump my chest, knowing, believing in the goodness of this PROCESS.

Everyday, I’m enough
I’m enough as who I am and who I’m evolving into

Ifiokabasi Okop
© 2020

Mother Hen

Above the city Jesus wept. “Jerusalem! Jerusalem!
Don’t turn away, Jerusalem! Come close to me,
my children.
“I am the mother hen,” he cried. “Beneath my wings
you all can hide.
There you’ll find warmth and life and love,
my little chicks, my children.
I’ve longed to gather you to me, Jerusalem! Jerusalem,
Please let me mother you! You’ll die
without my warmth, my children!”

We hear his call but turn away, for we are all
grown-up today.
We do not want a mother now. We’ll be
nobody’s children!
But as the cold world closes in, we think
about Jerusalem,
And what it’s like to walk alone, scared,
mother-love-less children.
No one lives through these dark, cold nights
without the warmth, the love, the life
That Jesus Christ, dear Mother Hen, gives gladly
to his children.

I trust we know enough of sin, to realize the bind we’re in
When even though we say we’re old, we’re acting just
like children.
And as we turn to leave the nest, convinced our choice
is for the best,
He hopes to see us come again, next time in New Jerusalem.
No one retains their innocence without the strong,
bright broody wings
That Jesus Christ, dear Mother Hen, folds softly round
his children.

Pamela Urfer
© 2021

His Will, My Will

I love my freedom, it is my human right
Nobody can take it from me – they mutter
This attitude to life resonates “It does not matter”
Bringing in its wake much piercings and hurt

The human will though a beauty to behold,
Allows us to be who we want to be unperturbed
And to do what we want to do- undisturbed
Left unchecked, wounds multitudes untold

Truly, the world is filled with so many evils
Emanating from some freedom gone wild
Evils perpetrated by men of consciences-seared
Leaves behind so much sorrow and ills

Over 2000 years ago, someone thought of himself less
King of kings and Lord of all came visiting, cloaked in humility
Left his domain, came to our wicked world proclaiming liberty
Freedom from sin, replaced with dominion previously lost

When I placed my faith in Jesus, he gave me power over sin
His will now reigns supreme above my freedom- so cherished
Now I can say yes to my father’s revealed will – as my savior did
Making my world safer, brighter than it had earlier been

Ajegbomogun Olufunke
© 2020

I Will Worship

Even if the sunken sun
Tucks in the radiance
Of your Glory
I will worship

And if the birds
Sheds of their feathers
And start writing letters
To petition the coverage
Of your Love….I will worship

Though the mountains
May mount up their shoulders
Like platoons of soldiers
To fight the greatness
Of your might
I will still worship

Let the waters
Overflow it borders
And join forces with its brothers
To alter the Altar
Of their father
I will worship

In the tininess of my voice
In the thinness of my cords
With the deafness of my breath
From the creeks
To the street
From battle to castle

I will always
Lift up my eyes
Bring down my knees to your heels
Stretch out my hands like the sand
And bow in awe for you
My all belongs to you

And I will not be silent
Rather be violent
Serving in your presence
Because my life without
Your essence
Is a sentence without sense
NONSENSE !

Let men cook up theories of Evolution
I will stir up an army of Revolution
That will invade Nations
With a resolution
That you are the God of all creations

I will not stop to give my Worship
To your Lordship
Because if I was not caught
In your courtship
I will have been a lost sheep
Buried in the belly of hardship

Beyond the measure
Of magnitude, Amplitude, latitude and Altitude
I will worship

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King Uwe
© 2020

Pressure

Devil, I see you!
Scheming, lurking in the dark;
Where my eyes can’t touch,
Looking for an opening to my mind,
Opening where you can drop stones….

These stones won’t break my mind,
Though built of glass, it won’t cave,
The lining is fortified and glued to my soul
My lungs are plugged to His words
So, come raging, throw your stones,
This Mind won’t cave to your pressure!

Olaoye Adeleye
(C) 2020

Clouds

I wear these sunglasses to see
The shadowed paintings of the sun meet
My ever-wandering thoughts;
These wintered trees I fought.

I wear this fainne as though I’m at peace with my past
A broad smile, loud laugh like a ship’s mast
Then hug myself twice a day
As a promise never to let my mouth say

I shake hands with tomorrow
Afraid of all it could bring; love, joy, hate and sorrow
This bromance that refuses to align to a scheme
Like the clouds of this year in multiple themes

Symolean Mikado Goodest
© 2020