Portraits of me as Bisi
say a roomful of tamed voices
these voices are not mine
they are of boys on the streets of Kaduna
survival turned a replica of the wind
& of walls with bullets stocked in their throats.
say a garden of roses:
some are withered,
some not winking at the sun,
or a tourist attraction to butterflies,
but one, still colourful.
call the withered & plucked roses my gone lovers
the colourful rose, my lover
& others, the fleeting symphony of love.
say a photo album of dead faces
these faces are of people
who once lived in my body
but left in a whisper
leaving memories dressed in brown.
say a long lonely road
with a car parked on its backbone,
comforted with trees & noon birds.
this road is life & its adventures,
i am the car parked on their tongue(s),
call the trees & noon birds figures of hope
sneaking on me whenever the feet
of my mind grows weary from moving on.
say a night house
emptied of photographs,
but a candle light on its cranium.
my mother is the candle light,
call her the tiny speck of light
left in my dark & lonely moments,
because the dead are fluorescents bulbs
in the hearts of the living,
they never go away
their lights never fade.
say the tales embedded in the eyes
of a malnourished boy
somewhere on the street of lagos,
he knows death by her maiden name,
he admires her beauty,
but his dreams are night howlers;
they keep him awake
& every day he lives unfolds his godship
& gods do not die.