DIE SAAT IST AUFGEGANGEN

Die Saat ist aufgegangen
Der Haß ist aufgestanden
Das Licht ist ausgegangen

Die eingehämmerten Zerrbilder
Generationenlang verdrehte Schilder
Ihre Augen werden täglich wilder

Es war eine Lüge die ganze Zeit
Sie wussten ganz genau die ganze Zeit
Von den Taten ihrer Eltern Eltern Bescheid

Sie wollen sie in heutiger Zeit wiederholen
Sie lassen freudig die Lachmasken fallen
Wagen sich endlich raus mit den Krallen

Man schämt sich für sie
Denn selbst schämen sie nie
Was noch beschämender ist – und wie.

Wie überbrücke ich gezwungene Ferne?
Wie tue ich herzlich, was ich tue gerne?
Laterne, Laterne, Sonne, Mond & Sterne.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije
2019: Das Jahr der deutschen Dichtung

EINMALIGE CHANCE

Leben: Mein Probetraum
Weck mich noch nicht auf
Aufgeben: Mein Grenzzaun
Halte mich auf
Ich gebe noch nicht auf

Unser Deutschland ist der Proberaum
Der Menschheit Geschichte
Ein einmaliges Grundgesetz
Im Ringkampf mit Geschichte
Entweder schreibt es einmal Geschichte
Oder es wird selbst einmal Geschichte

Tiefe Wurzeln hat ein Lebensbaum
Sichtbarere reichen kaum
Je sichtbarer sie werden
Desto instabiler der Raum
Entweder halten alle zusammen
Oder es stirbt der nächste Menschheitstraum.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije
2019: Das Jahr der deutschen Dichtung

INTIMITÄT

Zum ersten Mal schockiert
Mich der Herbsteinbruch nicht –
Vermutlich habe ich mich
Mittlerweile voll integriert
In alles.

Nach zehn und achtzehn und
Vierundzwanzig Jahren läutet mir
Erneut der frühe Spätling einen
Neuen Neubeginn ein – jedes
Mal anders, jedes Mal schön.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije
2019: Das Jahr der deutschen Dichtung

Neufahrn 16. Okt 2019
Neufahrn 16. Okt 2019

SCHATTEN AM STRASSENRAND

Wir sind nicht so anders wie Ihr
Wenn Ihr genauer hinschaut
Keine Angst. Kommt. Kommt näher
Ihr seid uns bereits vertraut
Wir Euch aber nur auf Papier

Jene Schatten am Straßenrand
Das sind keine Fremden
Es gibt keine Fremden auf diesem Land
Es gibt nur Mitmenschen
In anderem Gewand

Wenn Ihr grüsst, grüsst uns auch
Lehre uns Euer Land lieben
Erweckt in uns Eure Sitte und Euren Brauch
Denn die Dinge, die Euch betrüben
Bewirken bei uns dasselbe Gefühl im Bauch

Wer will denn nicht nach Oben streben?
Und das Eigene beschützen
Und weiterentwickeln und Wertes zurückgeben?
Auch ohne uns gegenseitig zu duzen
Ergänzen und bereichern wir uns das Leben.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije
2019: Das Jahr der deutschen Dichtung

AUSTAUSCH

Ich traf die Gesellschaft
Während meiner Wanderschaft
Wie Mensch Mensch begegnet
Gegenseitig mißverstanden wir uns
Über Politik, Sitte, Kunst
Schieden mit kühlem Gruß abgesegnet

Nur viel später in der Nacht
Bin ich schlaflos aufgewacht
Geweckt von einem Fremden
Der jetzt meine Seele geworden war
Denn meine war nun weg, und zwar
Wohnt sie im heut getroffnen Fremden.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije
2019: Das Jahr der deutschen Dichtung

KALEIDOSKOP MENSCH

Raum nach oben
Traum Bach unter
Kaum wach, törkelnd

Taumelnd, Politik
Baumeld, wild, Kritik
Von sich abgewiesen

Ausgewiesen
Sich ausgewiesen
In sich angekommen

Unter sich bleiben
Für sich ganz richtig
Harmonie bedürftig

Doch Grenzen fallen
Zwischen sich und sich
Was ist das, ein “Ich”?

Eingebürgert
Eingeschüchtert
Allerseits

Viele sind verunsichert
Nur die Mutigen
Lassen sich ändern

Denn sie wissen
Am Ende bleibt jeder
Trotzdem sich selbst.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije

IM ZEITALTER DER GRENZEN

Die Globalisierung, statt die Grenzen zu öffnen,
Hat sie lediglich nah an einander gerückt
Damit sie sich gegenseitig besser sehen, besser hassen;
Die Spannung macht alle gleichsam verrückt!

Besser wäre es vielleicht, die Grenzen wären noch zu
Und stattdessen die Herzen aufgehen
Dann würde jeder uneingeschränkt Eingang finden
In jedes andere Herz – und sich verstehen.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije

—-

2019: Das Jahr der deutschen Dichtung

BEING GERMAN IS MORE THAN BEING WHITE

Being German is more than being white – as hard as this may be to grasp for someone who is fully genealogically descended from the whites of the Germanic and other European tribes. And – this is more important – also as hard as this might be to conceptualise for someone who is descended from the black tribes of the African continent. Children of migrants however, in the second and further generations, may sometimes – but not always – be in a better position to more easily perceive the self-evident and natural truth of this reality. Being German is more, deeper, then being a colour or a name. The nation has a heart, and it pulsates with the love of those who call it, intimately, Home, each in their own way; who identify with it; who carry within themselves the urge to protect it, it’s history and its values, to develop it and move it forward, to interpret it from the depths of their own personal authenticity.

One of the most incisive challenges that face people who do not seem to be fully descended from the white stock of the teutonic tribes – as impossible to measure as this may be – is to experience their German-ness being questioned, the authenticity of their citizenship being attacked, their loyalty and love for their home being subjected to scrutiny, and their sense of belonging being trampled underfoot or conditionalized. It takes many forms – be it divisive politicians who publicly try to awaken resentments against german footballers of a different background, or be it cowardly citizens who shoot on darker-skinned germans, or be it the encountering of a glass ceiling in the corporate world. Eventually it all crystallizes into experiences that make the so-called ‘german of migrant origin’ feel that he or she is systematically or instinctively excluded from certain opportunities or from deeper degrees of appreciation and acceptance, either due to distrust or dislike.

Some people react to this challenge by succumbing to the temptation of going through extra lengths to prove and justify their right of belonging, either by demanding for acceptance or struggling to be twice as good in everything. Some other people’s reaction to this subtle wall of rejection might be in turn to mirror this wall by transmitting the negative experience inwards into an exercise in self-rejection. And then there are those whose radical reaction may be a partial or even total rejection of their host nation, Germany, leading to the curious instances of children or grandchildren of migrants – in a kind of cultural trauma – suddenly reverting back to the cultural background, the seat of which their parents once left behind. This creates the impression of a desperate scramble for an illusion, because inspite of everything, they still find it hard to totally detach from Germany in form and in attitude.

If being German is then not about being white or bearing a certain type of name, what then does it entail to be German? Some will tell you it is about an ascribing to and a living of certain ‘Values’. You will hear of ‘punctuality’, ‘hardwork’, ‘tenacity’, ‘exactness’, ‘discipline’, ‘perseverance’, ‘straightforwardness’ and similar things. Unfortunately, or fortunately, it is not as simple as that. True, these values and virtues are highly priced in the german soul from time immemorial, but in truth they cannot be germanized and apportioned to only one people. They are human qualities that can be lived by all peoples who so desire, each in their own way. Conversely, within our german societies you will also find those who do not embody these but rather other characteristics – and yet they are german too. Apart from that, following this line of thinking is what often leads to the ‘herrenmenschen’ mentality, the sense of superiority over others, a poisonous inchoate emotion that carries in its heart the seed of future defeats or disappointments of those who hold this mentality. For Values are goals that are continually striven after and served, never owned and mastered.

The global mixing of races and cultures that began hundreds of years ago with the self-propulsion of white peoples and white cultures into all the corners of the earth, continues in its ramifications to press organically forward, irreversible, and keeps on surprising mankind in every new century with the challenges and demands, opportunities and mysteries, and reciprocal developments, it presents us with. And also for the German of part or full African origins, the challenge is not in trying to be like others, or in making a contrived effort to be what you already carry in your soul. For what we carry in our soul is the true essence of being German – it is our love for Germany, our deep inner connection with her, her values, history, language, nature, culture, mentality, mystery, her basic law. It is one of the many puzzles that the global dispersal of races has produced. Just as the white South African is at home there, so is the Black German here. And our most special contribution is exactly that which makes us, to some, so seemingly different: our Blackness.

We should not hide it, we should show it. We should not denounce it, we should celebrate it. We should not deny Germany our uniqueness, we should share it with her. Don’t wait for anybody to accept you as a german; you accept yourself as a german. We accept ourselves as germans. There is that beautiful saying: if no one will give you a seat at the table, bring your own chair along – and enough food for all. Sharing is learning, is refining. We have a role to play in the upholding and further upbuilding of this society, it is a duty. And what we need to accomplish that will be awakened in us by the society itself, if we are bold and innovative and refuse to allow our spirits to be broken. Thus we grow and acquire new parts, by sharing of our origin. Change is happening fast and no one knows what’s coming next, but we can be a part of it. And by claiming and asserting and living our German-ness in the process of transformation, we stop being people waiting to be accepted and acknowledged, and become part of those acknowledging and ushering in the future.

Being german is more than being a colour. It is being a type. It is being a part-bearer of Germany and Germany’s future within you. It is a love you cannot describe.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

Published in the August/September 2016 edition of The African Courier.