The meaningless life of a poem – Osahon Oka

The meaningless life of a poem

The way light lays against the wind
& how the feathers of trees             wing
off your back               that artificial effect
           in the poem like saccharine
sweet decaying teeth like old bone             yellow
flowers in a dune           migrant memories
of long treks          & hump backed camels
begging waters                all that river in your hurt
            performance pain              palette after palate
of ringworm skulls            bleak eyes            bleak
streets            stupor            drunk puddles falling
off boots            oppression & suppression
           silenced bodies            stagnant streams
gathering debris on tongue            speaks
           speak to the wall           to the light
packing insect wings            fragile life
           flickering paper kites            birds
beautiful fauna of the sky            sweet sky
see my ancestors smile in the ground
say it; sacrifice of clay pots & yam & alligator
seeds & chalk & meat of stories           food
for the gods in your throat            sing            O
sing            beautiful dawn child            spirit
interjected into life            become a chrysalis
           crisis in a change            what changed
in your skin?            Cain roaming volcanic ash
               of Jesus’ second coming               come
into night            see ancient worlds in
the poetry of sky            this poem            that
poem            all the poetry our bodies can make
           on the bed            on the lampshade
           a vase of flower aging again            a gang
of overtures            be you            become
           a pupae justified by God’s flood
           ripening into a home            for young
bodies to drown in            a room without
windows            blind            see how God sees
           drink the taste out of your mouth
           holes in the sky            in the ground
           in your bullet wound            residues
of violence            in the shrine of your skin
           the anthill attracts the masquerade
           back to its prison            prison is body
without faith            without dreaming
           dream of me falling            & touching
nothing            a void of dark places
           darkness is also occupying space
           nothing is truly empty

Osahon Oka is a poet. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English and literary studies. His poems have been nominated twice for Best of the Net. His writings are presently on Lucky Jefferson, Malarkey Books, Feral Poetry Journal, Decolonial Passage among others. He writes from Edo state, Nigeria. He can be reached on Twitter: @osahonoka. 

Banner Art: Archi/Stri(u)cture(s), a VISPO by Robert Frede Kenter (c) 2021. Twitter: @frede_kenter

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