This side of heaven

There’s an emptiness that lurks in my heart still.
I give it my scowl face, but it won’t leave me be.
I give it no bed space, but it finds room, a squeeze.
I look away, but sad is my heart song still.

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Black Magic Girl

black magic girl.
the charm of her voodoo’s
not in her hips
nor in the jiggle of her feet.

her voice does not mimic the gods’,
but I pray, let her speak
the chants that play with
the beats of her heart.

let Black Magic Girl
dance now to
her tune, not the
drums of your bellow

nor the trump of your ego.
please leave the black magic girl be
to show us her charms
and not her skin or her

screams and your
black, brown, white magic.
black magic girl,
click your fingers and be

whisked off
away from men,
women, who do not see
that you are the charm,

your mind and your heart
(even as your skin glows
a blend of velvet chocolate and coffee grounds), of
black magic girl.

My Mother’s Day

My mum told me a story
of what I could be: anything
that my heart so dreamed.
She told a good story
with the way of an actor playing a story
with cries, a smile, and a host of poses
of how I could live with stars and heav’nly bodies
guiding me with a bit of algebra and a pound of Archimedes’.
My mum told me a story
of what I was, am: everything
I needed to be with no wit less.
She sold me the story
of how I could be myself without a sorry
(although sorry I would be if I did not have a clean bed!)
of how I had the rights to my own story
(with a reminder that God is the best of all stories).
My mum told me a story
that I long to tell too
with her chuckles, her frown, and my own host of poses
with a bit of algebra and half a pound of Archimedes
(perhaps Ṣóyinká too)
a story of strength and hope
that I’ve only now retold
for today, My Mother’s Day.

in the end

there is no grand end.
no, the birds would not cease
their songs; neither
would the wind delay its travel. we
have no grand end,
dust to dust, flesh to rot,
such is the end
of all men, women too,
with nothing grand about the end.

when flesh finds its rot
and the end has come and gone,
a new life becomes
or death returns
a relentless tormentor,
a choice* all yours.
there’s nothing grand about the end,
it is that life after that sparkles
with grandness that has no end.

*The Holy Bible John 3:16