WE HOLD ENDLESS CONVERSATIONS WITH NIGHT
When the dusk hisses the darkest fodder into thick night and the day into being, the pyot
Causes reshuffling of lights, glowing leaves hold through their duty,
Never with kinsfolk’s dialogue as light must not meet darkness. We laugh in the day,
Keep watch over the moon at night in crumply faces. Hideous monologues ride on.
The ears of the wall yet must not hear the factory of your descant thoughts or you
Take on new labels. Symbols and acts form insidious collage at three footpaths.
The night has quantums, quarry of names; it gives births to meanings. I learnt this from
The everyday conversation we hold with night. I want to shed off its darkness, by taking
Out its first letter to make the day eternal, light, reconfigured from the bleak ovary.
This conversation continues without end. Night is impervious even if my being
Admits the potency of its muse, the language of its un-godly hour when the coital
Rhythms blow the brain into the ecstasy of its regimen. Seeds are sown for persistent
Rebirths of long lines of days after all conversations with nights, different quartos.
Tomorrow needs not die except for the bursts: D and C sometimes
Foiling the citizens of playgrounds. The squeaks of domestic life are lost
In the armpit of wayward dance. We are night children
We hold endless conversations with night…
The hangmen smoothen plans for the land’s final breath.
ABSENT science to peer into the dark alleys of their souls,
no physics solves the arithmetic of hidden smiles but we
know the Abiku by its repeated comings,
perhaps his last before another.
Open. The page, scanty soon begs to be filled again
in endless greed
leaning on their handy imagination.
Letters picked by emperors
for schisms the masses see without comprehending,
trusting again in the long OLD rhetoric
of NEW blue tongues brandishing fires.
I sit through this crowd.
That an old man in sea whiteness will bathe again
his skin with your sweat. I leave this thought half-way
through the throat of a pensive moment.
BETWEEN UNKNOWING AND KNOWING
By what we knew not we were made
We opened the roads by our coming, cries of knowing
Break forth on the breathing path.
This rust-beaten path many feet have trodden,
Will be earth to our limbs and we know of the smell of lemon
See the haversacks, revues of dreams and hear prattles of birds
On the half branch populated by shrinking leaves.
We know we are here, but there we know not.
The owl says the air is moist-dry on the next road we fear to walk.
We get the hint. We get there unknowing, unfeeling but know
We are travelers without trains, aircraft
Or cars or bounties.
Empty airs fill our heart.
YOU STOKE THE FIRE OF ANSWERS
(For Christopher Okigbo)
I did not ignite myself into courage, fitful
courage to do imagining as in marbled idioms
those catch-fire phrases let me on
the journey into the self, the self
is not one but dissonant, yet
peaceful liquids of unending
mutations, recesses of self in
You stoke the fire and now
I burn in myself, my soul queries on
but my skin is habituated in
the presages of irregular beings
that make me the goitre of thunders,
lacerating leeches with flaming
tongues. I choose not this path
but the answers are in this call
that chose me. You stoke the fire,
I am the ash of the season’s entrails…
The twinned answers for a call, your fire
When Ani planted me a fire crop for answers,
my skull pummelled Atakpo’s
waters and green efflorescence sat on my gleam dome
and Asiama’s breathes on me the Igbuzor’s
pristine accent, until they gave me the early
tongues of the razzling lightning
you stoke this fire that answers to the bramble.
THE FRAUDULENT PRAYERS
You will know no trials, Christ has taken them away, the sign is at the Calvary, but you cannot suffer for anyone to get breadcrumbs?
God’s children are blessed beyond any curse; they are a chosen priesthood, without clean cassocks of your Christ in the sea of a descending host?
You will not die but live to declare the words of your God, how then would you make heaven, not dying from the many deaths you raged humanity with?
Knock and the door will be opened, not a sledge hammer to kill an ant of desire. Won’t you work first or grace verges on the clock of automation?
Blessed are those who give to their pastors, for they shall have rubies in abundance, who are the pastors, here, the ones who can loan to dozen nations, paltry sums from their incalculable reserves from tithes and thrifts and offerings?
Poems © Ndubuisi Martins (Aniemeka)
Image: Pixabay.com remixed