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Shadows of a Coming Darkness: Poems by Bello Akeem



There’s a Mammoth on the west coast of Africa,
who is succumbing to a Momma’s kiss.
Her grave-yard dance nearing its climax,
and the shadow of her doom looms larger.

The bones of her body are skewed.
Her organs are vulnerable to parasites
slowly sucking dry her life’s stream.
overhead, shadows of carrion birds grow thicker.

An eastern shadow is screaming kill her, share the meat;
a northern one is yelling leave her be.
Like the babbles of little streams beneath the roar of giant
waterfalls, there’re whispers to cure her of her ailment.

Those who enjoy feeding on maggot infested carcass
never want to think of healing open wounds.
A dying majestic beast goes on wallowing in her malady
while the shadows of her nightfall grow ever bigger.



This morning, I woke
to meet the world up-side down,
here in my corner of the globe.
Reason has taken flight,
the ship of humanity is rapidly sinking
beneath the murky waters of greed and selfishness.

On the morning news, a voice ruefully told,
like a Juror’s indictment on our collective conscience,
of the harrowing tales of children abandoned
in gaol, who’re now neighbors to the unsavory denizens.
Children now emaciated, seedy and diseased,
because bureaucracy’s insensitive, society decidedly apathetic.

Society that no longer reason
with the implement suited to that purpose.
It let its reasoning proceed from its tummy.
It is excessively driven by gain and pleasure
to self and body; its ruling class full of sybarites
pursuing their taste at the expense of whatever.

My society, what do you think
of your unique sapient implement?
Never there as an adornment,
but your most priceless tool on a sojourn.
In this time of dire need, use it
as a mirror reflecting your absurdity.

The absurdity that’s made religion the opium
depravedly sought by the multitude,
made it money factory to religious leaders-
just as opium was to the merchants
on the Mandarin coast of ancient china.
Absurdity of ethnocentrism, of religious bigotry killing us.

Like slothful gardeners, we submit
our fecund soil to scrub and creepers:
thriving elements barren of benefits.
We are blinds working to be crippled.
When will our eyes open to the abyss
we are crawling toward.
Poems © Bello Akeem

Bello Akeem
Bello Akeem
Bello Akeem was born in Lagos. He now lives in a valley on the outskirts of Ogun State. Some of his comments on the socio-political situation in Nigeria can be found online.

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