For the first time, I bring you, Reader Dear, three of my poems – raw, without any prose pieces and not as complements to anything prosaic. Three poems which explore not only (the physical tokens and contexts of) Prayer and its impact on the human psyche and spirit and perhaps worldview, but also on the place of Prayer in the grande scheme of things, and its role as a bridge, the communion between one side of the world or reality and another…
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- The Enquiry
sweat and rain mingle in the solid downpour
it pounds on parched scalps
feet break stones rocks crack
toes squirt mud water gush
wind beats frayed faces
with pins with cold
world is white bleak
shriveled remains trudge on to give flesh to The
Enquiry at The
Oracle. searching souls decay
gnaw away with waiting at The
Oracle. souls gnarled with the labyrinth of dilemmas and dreams
souls negotiating a handshake from a desperate distance
navigating, measuring their lot of thought and depth
while the backs of disinterested spirits look on
spirits scratching serious sores with rocks
spirits cracking kernels with swollen paws
Tswa. Omanye aba.
let the moon no more swallow the sun at dusk
let not the fingerlings gulp down the crab a-whole
let the shell not shell another shell…
let not the kite suffocate the sky’s nostril
let the paths not turn rock with hoes
let not the footprints stray ahead of the wayfarer
Tswa. Tswa. Omanye aba.
let dew be found to show for the morning
let the spirit and soul reconcile
To share their unique, singular home.
Tswa. Tswa. Tswa. Omanye aba.
Thursday, 23rd April, 2009
- …at the scent of water.
at the scent of water
let the frayed stump spew green
let the foul egg vomit a being
let that which was birthed to die
let that which died before birth
at the scent of water
Friday, 19th June, 2009
- Rain Again
rickety priest leant on lithe walking stick and prophesied:
“I hear the sound of rain
her footsteps thundering behind
her billowy rolling children.
I smell the scent of rain
in the gritty swirl of sweat and
heat and dust and green!”
Our lips simply, limply, repeated the refrain:
“Oh let the rains come
Let the rains come quick for us
Lest we perish…”
(For we cannot afford the argument of our minds:)
“Let the rains come spoil our dire rituals for
we have long been actively lazing for
far too long in quarter-hearted supplications for it
Let the rains come beat us so hard that
we throw the hands lifted in prayer
of rains and gods and fields and all and we rush
home…Oh, that it rains so hard (so) we sleep so tight
and we forget our hunger and we rush
to tend the dying tendrils the ‘morrow
with emptier stomachs for both faith and
hope…Let it rain so hard for so long so we
forget to come back to give thanks and we
remember – only too late- we don’t need rain for that long so we
go praying the gods for draught-of-sorts
Monday, 30th May, 2011
Wednesday, 27th January, 2016
* * *
In its September 2014, libation-themed online anthology, University of London’s Prairie Schooner featured The Enquiry, together with other poems by young, contemporary Ghanaian writers and selected same-themed poems from its archives. You may see the publication here.
Together with two other poems, …at the scent of water first appeared in the October-November 2013 (online) editions of Kalahari Review. You may see the publication here.
After adapting it for theatre, Rain Again featured in Accra Theatre Workshop’s maiden short drama production, An African Walks into a Psychiatrist’s Office and Other Short Plays. This was on Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd November, 2013. Learn more here.