PLAYGROUNDS

There is evil in the air
It chokes your breath in unexpected places
A playground, full of hard adult eyes
Watching, and avoiding, each other
While playing children loudly try
To shout the intruders merrily out –

One by one each parent
Picks up its child and hurries home
Away from this place
And no-one can say really why
The world became like this
Or when. It’s the future, and we’re there.

CHE CHIDI CHUKWUMERIJE.

THE DAILY TRAINRIDE

In the skyline grey
Memory hung
The future gone astray
Emptiness stung
Hung with reality in the greying city
The dying trees, the loveless pity
Duplicity and winding and twisting, reflecting
The beast in the best of the robots erecting
Their concrete phalli, their bull’s I’s, to scratch the sky
The insatiable itch, impotent ambition, try and try
And try as you might, your might is the limp cloud
The wilted grass, the lonely office, the empty crowd
The quiet madness, the gory glory
The daily trainride into another same story
The casual business of getting by
Between yesterday and tomorrow
A moment of reflection, gone, a sigh
Of something neither joy nor sorrow.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije

INSOMNIA

THERE IS a frenzy in the air. The world is dark and bloody like an ominous sunset. The land is full of cogitation. Everybody is fired up, wired up, wound up like an electric train, toy trains on their permanently defined tracks. There is a sad desperation in their every chug and hoot, in their every wailing whistle, a longing for a freedom that will never be, must never be, because this freedom, freedom from these tracks, this prison, would mean the end of destiny, the termination of purpose and of life.

This is the continuum in which I live. A dark and dirty cocoon. But who dares to break out? Who dares risking the encountering of the recognition that, truly, all one might be is a toy e-train on toy tracks mounted on a table in the children’s playroom? Who shall risk this dare, in the hope of finding another reality, the celebration of birth of butterfly?

A longing, hard to define, was long the taproot. The root of roots and hope of hopes. The dream unremembered in the clamour of urban dawn. Generation gap after generation gap. Yawning emptiness. Your blood is much too soggy. It weighs you down and is choking you to death, dear continuum. You are more than city, more than state, more than country, more than region, subregion, continent or subcontinent, even you are more than world. You are continuum. And I hate you. Hate you for holding me, for binding me, for being an extension of me and a limitation of me. I hate you because I hate loving you. I love you but I don’t like you. I hate loving what I don’t like. I hate hating you. I wish I could stop hating you and start loving loving you. I am afraid of you. You make me sick. You make my heart beat with a deep quietness that I know to be peace.

Why? Continuum of urban disconnect, why? When the sun rises you will wake me up from my insomnia and refuel me with your frenzy. I flee into the deep.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

DISCERNING

I fear
The daily commute
To the valley of the mute
The echoless cry of my silent flute
Digs a hole in my soul
Wringe me mad
I fear

Mockery sticks his head around the door
You no waving yo flag no mo?
Blackhawk down
My dreams, stranded shipwrecks
Scuttle each hurriedly into safety
Hiding they fearfully await the scorching passage
Of the locals’ raging raid –
Some will be caught, shot, mocked
Some will sacrifice themselves
That the finer ones may escape the drape
For tomorrow’s blossoming

Quiet now
Wait for the Sign.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.