Mr. Africa Poetry Lounge!


Homework screams for my labour
But I have to go with my friends
To the stream behind our classroom
Which snakes all the way to Imo River.
It is the rainy season, the water has swollen,
And the breath of wet weeds on its edges
Intermingle with the scent of half-shy teen girls
Who bathe flawless bodies in it.

I watch my friends triumph
Over the muscles of the restless deep.
Though unskilled like them, a hunger
Nudge at my heels, teasing my spirit
From its cautious stance.
Fuelled by teen tongues and faces
Glowing in sinful glee,
I cannot take another boo.

Naked to my testicles,
I dive to prove a pointless point,
Soon gasping for air,
Grasping at illusory saviour arms,
I get slowly pulled through the door
Into the plain of the disembodied.

In the formless muscles of furious waves,
I see a montage of my brief sojourn;
Eleven years and a few days,
Themed by laughter of my mates
A triviality obscene, mean and cruel.

In helpless surrender,
I accept my fate, only to have my chest
Slammed against a palm tree trunk
In deep bath on my path. I hug it
Like a lover,
With much warmth and debt.

Written by Nnorom Azuonye


Mr. Africa Poetry Lounge