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Africa: Blog This Poem!

The African blogosphere is rapidly expanding, bringing more voices online in the form of commentaries, opinions, analyses, rants…and poetry. Blogs have created a new space for African poets to share their creative and imaginative works with a wider audience. Today, I will introduce you to a few poems written by African bloggers.

My Voting Dilemma is a poem by Kenyan Poet (based in Nairobi, Kenya):

This paradox of how a piece of paper
With X and ticks marks like an exam paper
To examine my literacy and disarm my prayers
Malcolm X and Nike labels
Tick no and X or cancel yes
No I don’t want yes
My answer is no
And so I will cancel
This sycophancy of how symbols and signs
Of Cocks and bananas, roses and oranges
Determine my choice and taste of changes
I am a vegetarian and don’t fancy cocks
For over 24 years, shoved down my throat
Fruits are healthy but the hawkers too many
Roses, who is saint Valentino?
My answer is no
And so I will cancel…

Jah Guide, a Rastafarian blogger from Sudan writes, Someone:

I was searching underneath the depth of my mind

With a heavy load in my heart

Crushing

Melted memories

Ghosts

That hug and whisper

Am I crazy?

Where is my home?

Some one to understand

How can just one man remember it all?

I want to be normal

Stupid

But….

Here they come

I have found them for you

I am bleeding

Take my hand

Lead this tortured soul

To the other side

This wall must fall

Where is my home?

My semi Sahara

Underneath it

The ancients planted my seed

Dont…is a poem by Kenyan Expressions dedicated to “all parliamentary and civic aspirants”:

don’t give me the title deed today
because you want my vote tomorrow
for the day after…you’ll leave
and I will be left in sorrow

don’t make me promises
that you know very well
you will not keep
you fooled me once
you fooled me twice
but this time I will not weep

Broken Diamonds by ON DRIFTING, WAVY WORDS was written in honor of the victims of the American embassy bombing in Nairobi in 1998:

They were born,
On a day in the past,
And lived their lives,
Till that fateful day,
Seventh of August.

The scene was aghast,
After the blast,
The blast that claimed them,
And what a mayhem it caused.

The glasses flew,
As if they knew,
Where they were going;
They cut deep in the skin,
And the memory,
Remains deeply etched in our hearts.

Rethabile Masilo from Lesotho writes Lerato in Poéfrika, a group blog of creative Africa-inspired writing:

you left
for work
without
a word/
and I just
felt nuts,
smoking
the cleft
of a day/
a bird
is caught by
morning till
twilight
wraps my
thought and
the feathers
fly home/ I
start feeling
nuts again,
then you tap
the padauk
door, which
I stagger to
and open
with the
other hand.

He also writes, Pissin’ in the forest, on his own blog, Sotho:

We head home
by a trail round
the lower villages
to avoid stopping
for a drink at
Moselantja’s place,
your cheeks
red in spring air,
a sense of life
darting through
your blood. I’m

walking for health,
your young quack
thinks I’m as good
as in the tomb, wants
to haul me back
out–he shoulda met
Niclas when he was
around. But you
added your voice
to his and so here
we are, sweating
Sunday afternoon.

We turn right after
the villages and
head for the woods,
the sound of hoof
on twig deserting us.
It’s all I can do
not to pee on a tree,
your only proof
to tell whether or not
I been drinkin’. It’s
all I can do not to think
of my babyhood dream,
pissin’ in the forest.

Lascia ch’io pianga, partly inspired by the Italian opera, Rinaldo is written by Mshairi (a poet in Swahili):

in the melancholic hour before dawn
oppressive memories torment the senses
tangled sheets bear testament to another sleepless night
another search for succour in vain
in anguished silence the forlorn inconsolable heart
softly whispers to the bleak darkness to
let me weep
let me weep for
vanished yearning dreams
unfulfilled wishes
let me weep for
unshared laughter
extinguished hopes
the song unsung
the words forever unsaid
let sorrow break these chains of agony
for pity’s sake if nothing else
let me sigh for love’s respite and release
let me weep for stories untold
and grieve for the soul’s troubled woes
misery without end

Let me weep
Lascia ch’io pianga

Snapshot of the soul writes The Fog :

It's been countless hours since my last taste
what a sadly ironic way to go to waste

but I'm getting better now

roughed the darkness redefining my rhythm
clearing you out of my system
and waking's still not easy
believe me
still gotta pry these eyes open
every single morning of each day
knowing there'll be no surprises, no point in hoping
just phantoms forming every which way

You are in the thick of the fog

grandmaster's obokano‘s poem, Noose-Reactions, was written following Saddam Hussein's death by hanging :

For the hanged
mixed reactions
Saddam is hanged
jubilation life in the western bush
consolation and weeping in the east
i see no life in the rest.

Poet Mutiso, blogging at POETRY BLOG – SEEKING HIGHER SOLITUDE, writes Visitors of the night:

They moved stealthily,
Through the thickets,
Like the shadows of the unknown.

They were not welcomed,
Neither accepted but they came,
Not boldly, but with covered faces,
And painted bodies.

They didn't knock,
Nor open they broke through,
That's what they liked,
It was their pleasure.

They entered like thieves,
But they never stole property,
They stole bodies;
Stripping your flesh leaving naked bones,
And dust.

They? Who were they?
They were them
Send by who was after us.
All… we don't know.

Endi's World remembers the people who have lost their lives in pipeline fires in Nigeria in And the darkness…:

‘Twas a hushed tale
Of a commonwealth flowing home
We've gone to stake a claim
A search for light before dusk was due

On an empty stomach rumbling with greed
We came; with diverse vessels
Seeking a path through our poverty
A fare for a seasonal ritual

In the grassland; a carcassland
Of torn engines and the living dead
Our fate hung on a light
Around this tempting pool of darkness

Our eyes had sought the Rocks light
Hoping it will make us light
From the yolk of a penuric existence
It came though; with it a scorching comfort

And it came, a light came
Through nowhere, like a spirit
And it dawned on us
That dawn's come, then 'twas darkness again

And finally, Sandra Mushi from Tanzania recalls her First Time:

The music is merry and right
The room is shiny and bright
Your kind eyes dance as they smile at me
I am nervous, scared as tense as I can be
You approach me, over me is your big frame
To agree to come myself I start to blame

The earth seems to shake with my fear
My heart beats you can almost hear
My body is numb with such fright
Thinking of you entering where it is so tight
As I lay back my muscles with dread do tighten
The sight of the tool you will use does frighten

I try to look for an excuse to leave
As you refuse to be swayed a sigh I heave
The music is supposed to be soothing
But now in my young ears sounds so brooding
Fast and faster my heart beats also pump
From my mouth my heart will jump

With a warm smile, you ask me if I’m afraid
Bravely I shake my head, nervously toying with a braid
You have had more experience, you calmly say
Finding the right place, your finger does play
You probe deeply and I shiver; my body tenses;
I moan, groan, tears sting, as you bring down my defenses

You are as gentle as you had promised you’d be
Looking deeply within my eyes, my fears you see
Urging me to trust you, you beg me some more
Saying you have done this many times before
I open wider to give you more room for an easy entrance
The pain is so intense I seem to be in a trance

Begging you to hurry I begin to plead
You slowly take your time I can’t stand the deed
Gentle and slow you must be, you say
So not to cause me much pain as you pray
Your gray hair and tobacco smell reminding me of Daddy
To your fatherly figure I then give in gladly

Pressing closer, going deeper, trying to hold you at bay,
Suddenly I feel the tissue rip and give way;
Throughout my little body excruciating pain does surge
I feel the slight trickle of blood as on you urge
You looks at me concerned and asks me if it’s too painful
My eyes filled with tears I try to be as brave as a bull

I shake me head and bravely nod for you to go on
My braids with pink ribbons shake as I tremble and moan
You begin going in and out with such skill
But I am now too numb you within me to feel
I feel something after a while bursting within me
You pull it out of me, I lay panting, glad its over and I’m free

My little body shudders a sigh of relief that its over
Smiling warmly over me your big frame does hover
I have been your most stubborn yet most rewarding experience
You say with a chuckle, sweet stubborn body of brilliance
Straightening my wrinkled school skirt I get up
With a wink, you reward me with a lollipop

Lick

Lick

Slurp

Slurp

Noisily I lick away at the delicious swirl of sweetness bout
My cute little lips no longer in an annoyed sulking pout
I smile and thank my dear old dentist as I merrily hop out
It was my first time to have a tooth pulled, have no doubt

8 comments

  • omodudu

    Exhibition of great talent. Good work once again.

  • Squid Sauce and Chopped Gobo

    Hairy trees with beared boughs

    Roaming the ailes in search of fish eyes.

    Why do some lights cast point sources (images, shadows made of light) on the surface of the water and others are search lights bridging the gap from shore to shore.

  • Hmm, Hmm! I saw my poem here. Nice. Real nice.Thanks for helping in sharing it.

  • ras babi babiker

    This is great work, keep on moving….

  • wow!i have seen poems by friends i know and mine as well.good job.

  • Gabriel Nwaeze

    Please i just want to know if u also offer competition and i also want to know how i can send my poems.

  • Amor de Primavera

    Amor… intenso… imenso
    Infinito sentimento
    cravado no peito.
    Onde a dor da Saudade
    Vivendo no tempo
    Que corre contra o vento
    Que alimenta meu coração
    Que trás na primavera
    Lembrança de outrora
    Como duas almas gêmeas
    Em forma de beija-flor
    Buscando o néctar do amor
    Sentindo o perfume suave
    Despendendo neste jardim intenso
    Palco de nossas páginas escritas
    Testemunho de juramentos
    De juntos sempre ficar
    E hoje de intenso a vazio
    A lembrar tua partida
    Sem dizer adeus
    Venho te homenagear
    Junto as flores a lembrança
    No jardim da esperança
    De quem me ensinou a amar
    A quem fez feliz
    Que hoje em sombras do passado
    Dos vestígios deixados
    Vive na saudade
    De uma primavera feliz.

    Ivaneti

  • wow wat a beautiful poem

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