RETIREMENT

His pride is on sale
And his shame
And on his broad frame
You can see him bearing his fate
With a brave face on display

Seventy years of age
All his fears have come of age
His hopes, dreams, plans, crumbled
But now he’s picked himself up again
And sits at the south train station

Easel, paint-brushes, stool, low table
But he holds his head up high
Give him a smile and a coin
And he’ll paint a portrait of you
That will stand the test of time

He: You speak good german
I: Can I write something about you?
He: Yes, but no names please. I
Have a granddaughter in Darmstadt, who
Doesn’t know what I do to survive.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

MASKING PRIDE

What’s behind the veil?
Nothing. The veil is your face
I don’t need a mask
My face masks my thoughts

The reason why I don’t hide things
Is because the best hiding places
Are out there in the open
That’s why you don’t see it

You don’t believe the things I tell you
Because I tell them to you
But if I were to hold them back
You would start to look for them in my Silence

And you would look and look
Until you became a prisoner of my Silence
So why don’t you appreciate it
When I just tell you in plain simple words

That I love you?
I killed you when I took off your mask
Now you want to kill me, by putting
A new different one back on.

But I already saw the girl within
Hidden deeper than shame and sin
Struggling with the pain within
And Pride is her middle name.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.