Saturday, 15 December 2018



The fire crackling in my eyes has a rhythm,

which resonates with the storms we wrestled,

before we lost our paddle & before our boat,

broke into pieces. Tighten your grip, my kinsmen,

on this flaxy wind. Let every man ask his chi to

place him in the hollow of our ancestors’ skulls,

Let us all plead with the gods to make for us,

another paddle from their bones, for we must

get home, even if home is a land trapped in

the closed eyes of the dream which sat beside

papa’s bamboo bed when he told us about

the two rivers on nnem’s forehead, from which

we will never again harvest fishes, fattened by

flesh bits of a Benue boy, who chewed a plate

of bullets for late dinner. My kinsmen, let us

glide thru’ these waters. Swim we must, sail we will,

but sink we shan’t! For we must get home, even if home

is a dream, the blur dream of a famished lad whose eyes

were invited for a salad in Aso Rock while his drooling

mouth is tucked away in a blanket of darkness, as he

spends another moonless night under the Lagos bridge.

Please lift your heads above these ebbs & read the words

on my tongue, for it is Ala’s scroll & Agwu‘s map, 

both will lead us home, to the land where the rain of love

will fall on our fathers’ backs & erode the scars of the

Biafran War & make the lushness of our lawn to return with

all its elegance, till we walk this continent again with pride.

nnem- my mother

Ala- an Igbo deity of the earth, fertility, creativity and morality

Agwu – an Igbo deity of health and divination, and one who explains good or bad.

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