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Steady my Emotion: Poems by Tope Akeredolu


Steady my emotion
Like the ocean on a starry night
Like a tattered kite
In the breeze

Steady my emotion
Let me be led into
empty space filled with love
Let oceans of white blood snake out from my
chest through cupid pierced holes

Steady my emotion with fest
hoisted by Hector on the sea to Troy
and let even his gaze fix me to my voyage

Steady my emotion
With the sonorous vocal of my minstrel
Let the villes and hills answer his call
The meadows to their heels to heed

Steady my emotion as the spring
Effortlessly galloping down willing cracks and creeks
Steady my emotion like the sun ignoring man’s plea
Rolling out ages and seasons
Let us run not against the sun
For no man prevails at its expense



(Where old misty mountains adorn the sphere, competing
with the sky in height and glory and boisterous antelopes race and hide
behind the shrubs from Ogún’s1 intrusion)

My countryside
Where unruly old vultures scavenge on hot excrement
Threatening even the carriers
Of the meal, the happy children
Pouring out yesterday’s fill

My countryside
Where men sit under odo’s2 shade
Filling and refilling calabashes
Bantering about wine and women
With ope3 and ̣ọ́ta4 patting
Olópón5 and her kids for a blaze of the night’s glory

My countryside
Where the cowherd in his tattered silk
Returns home to hurray! of happy children
Frolicking in the moonlight night; attending
elders say; when I was your age

Now my countryside
Where one cannot tell the difference between
A horn and a hummingbird
For hunters now hunt in sight of the horn
Bring their spoils in exchange for a seat under the blue light.


Ogún1 is a Yoruba god of war and metal;
Odo2 is a mythical tree in the Ondo north mountain side;
Ope3 is the loser in an Ayo duel
Ota4 is the winning opposite in an Ayo duel
Olópón5 is the many houses (children) that Ayo literally possesses.


Poems: Tope Akeredolu

Tope Akeredolu
Tope Akeredolu
Akeredolu Tope Akinola is a Nigerian poet, language instructor and contributor at People’s Voice magazine - a community based quarterly magazine. His works have appeared on African writer, Indian periodical, for Harriet, ink sweat and tears, dwartz online, Antarctic journal and several literary outlets. He is back at his alma mater in pursuance of a degree in law. He lives and writes from Ikare Akoko- the land of the twin mountains.

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