DICHTERHERZ

Ein Kind ging im Wald spazieren
und merkte irgendwann
die Schönheit der Steine überall;
sie zogen ihn in ihren Bann.

Er nahm einen Stein in die Hand,
drückte ihn gegen sein Gesicht;
der Stein schien plötzlich zu reden,
erzählte dem Kind ein Gedicht.

Und jeder Stein, den er nahm,
erzählte ihm sein eigenes Poem,
drang tief in das kindliche Herz ein,
hauchte ihm ein sein Zauberodem.

So sammelte es jahrelang Steine,
trug sie aus dem Wald hinaus -
und aus allen diesen Dichtungssteinen
baute es sich ein Haus.

Das Kind wurde erwachsen,
der Erwachsene lebte und starb
und nach einer langen langen Zeit
wieder auf der Erde geboren ward.

Und wuchs und spielte und suchte
und strebte und wusste nicht:
es wohnte tief in seinem Herzen
für jeden Tag ein Gedicht.

Bis eines Tages die Liebe,
an einem anderen Tag der Verlust,
dann Verrat, Sehnsucht, Sünde, Reue
sprengten das Herz in seiner Brust.

So fand er in seinem Schmerz,
daß tief in seinem Geiste
sein Herz war felsenfest und stark,
egal wie tief er hinein reiste.

So reiste er weiter durch den Wald
in seiner Seele und fand
eines Tages einen Garten dadrinnen,
in dessen Mitte ein Haus stand.

„Zuhause!“ wusste er wieder,
denn es war tief und es war schlicht
Und nun hat er wieder, glückliches Kind,
für jeden Tag ein Gedicht.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije
Im Jahrzehnt der Deutschen Dichtung

ART IN ALL ITS FORMS

Art in all its forms
Is the thief of time
Stealing from the past
Sharing with the present
And the future
Like Robin Hood
For time is wealthy in memory
And, like Shylock, reluctant to give.

An evening song will reawaken your life’s morning
A painting will view like déjà vu from lives unremembered
And a poem will whisper your life’s story back to you.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

COMING BACK

image by Pexels

You reap what you sow
And pay back what you owe –
Just a little rhyme to remember
When you harvest the crops in September.

Never burn the bridge you’re travelling on
For it alone will lead you back to where you begun –
Just a little thought to ponder on
Wanderer, before you wake up and wander on.

Givers never lack
Takers never give back
Because they forever lack –
The newest face has on old old back
The global highway was once a little dirt track.

We reap what we sow
And pay back what we owe –
Just a little rhyme to remember
Brother, when you await the new year in December.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

 

(Image courtesy Pexels/Pixabay)

JUST ME

image by kloxklox_com

I am my own forerunner
My own ancestor
The reincarnation of myself

I am the roots of my own tree
The stem, the trunk, the branches and the leaves
The flower and the fruit
The source of my own seeds

I am the beginning of my self
And the continuation and the end

The original blame rests upon me
The final victory shall be my handiwork
I am the controller of my destiny
Nothing more, nothing less
Nothing else.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

(Image by kloxklox_com)

TWICE IS NOT ENOUGH – pt. 7

Ada slipped open the sixth and final poem in the small collection –

YOUNG AGAIN

Those were the words, that was the title.

“Were we ever young?”

“Did we ever age?”

Neither replied the other. Each had spoken for the other.

This last poem, for some reason, was italicised from first word to last. We shall be young one day again, younger than we ever were, young as ageless eternity. YOUNG AGAIN.

It becomes simple
Crosses threshold
Mortality into immortality
Denseness into quickness
Old into new, call it young

The good become older
Grow younger
Younger and younger and younger
The better you
Lighter and truer
Younger grow

Let us all grow young again
Fill the Earth with laughter
With truth, with youth –

Ngozi looked into Ada’s eyes and said:

“I want to see Tony again.”

There was a pause. But did a spell break somewhere quietly? Or were we never there?

“Do you have a telephone?” Ngozi pressed, trying to interpret Ada’s silence. It must mean something.

Suddenly Ada was taken aback.

A spell seemed indeed to abruptly lift itself off her and, in its place, her thinking cap, invisible on her head but visible in the sudden, guarded look in her eyes, treacherous windows, descended, full of fears and cleverness and innumerable bad memories, upon her. She was suddenly appalled at herself, and the last twenty minutes swiftly took on the aspect of a fairy-tale, a dream. Had it really happened? Who was this strange woman beside whom she was sitting, sharing the intimate poems of her brother with, like old friends. She experienced the sensation of having been swiftly disarmed and intruded upon, and even, oddly, deceived.

Her head moved back a fraction of a unit of precise measurement and re-appraised Ngozi with suspicious, half-friendly, half-unfriendly, unsure eyes. Like it was in the beginning. – Yes? Who are you?

The returning silence, cold and dividing, began to mature.

Ngozi suddenly understood Ada. She smiled tenderly. Into her handbag she reached, extracted a black, silver-capped pen and then a tiny slip of blue paper. Carefully she balanced the little paper on the side of her bag and, luckily, the bus was temporarily caught in a traffic-jam at Ijaiye. The type that Lagosians call the Standstill, in contradistinction to the Go-Slow and the Hold-up.

Quickly she wrote her name and telephone number down, then wordlessly handed it over to Ada.

“That’s my office telephone number. Please tell him I said Hi.” She smiled again, then turned her head forward; then turned back again, smiling even more disarmingly and added: “and, oh, by the way… Merry Christmas – one day in arrears.”

“Same to you too…”

Ngozi had turned her face away. She didn’t speak again. At the next bus-stop, Iyana-Meiran, she alighted from the bus and left a thoughtful Ada again without her presence, as it was in the beginning.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

Part 6
Part 5
Part 4
Part 3
Part 2
Part 1

(This is the end of the excerpts. The whole  book can be obtained via Amazon)

Read the full book:amazon cover copy twice is not enough 2015

TWICE IS NOT ENOUGH – pt. 1

Whisperings

Whisperings of a new return of harmattan…
Is it hazy? Was it foggy? Dark, bright?
Feels, like Dawn, Sounds, like Dawn
Looks, like new Dawn –

An early breath of Harmattan serenaded
My heart –
Birds accompany, airy prose
Crickets nonstop chirping
Yet night is gone ~
Deeply I love the boundary between
Rains and thirsty Harmattan…

Nature has said yes,
Why say no?

For some reason, that poem had been going round and round in her head all morning. It had been with her when she arose and saw the haze through the window. It had been with her when she thought of her destination. But she had lost it now, in the middle, on the path between her beautiful beginning and the end of her journey. Now she was walking past the toughest, roughest, most chaotic, dirtiest market in her world and it had torn her out of her reverie. She would have much preferred not to come this way, but she had to, to get to the bus she needed.

The beautiful woman continued calmly down her path, ignoring the lusty cat-calls being pelted without restrain at her by the Oshodi traders. Rough young men with coarse voices and bad intentions. Given half a chance, they would make her regret not only her manner of dressing today, but that she even came this way at all, to this dirty, colourless, overpopulated market, to do her shopping.

Yet she walked with her head high, as though she were not burning with shame as she heard the phrases they were directing at her.

“Na me and you o! If I finish you, you no go want leave me lai-lai!”

“Baby you carry o! Me sef I carry. Come see am!”

Loud peals of dirty male laughter rolled after her. Her? Other people were following the scene with amusement. She walked as fast as she could without seeming to be in any hurry. There were other women, she knew, who would have returned insult for insult, thrown dirt for dirt, traded bad tongue for bad tongue, claimed an eye for an eye, verily, and a tooth for a tooth…. But she couldn’t. She was above that, above them. So she silently breathed her humiliation, in and out, in and out, in and out.

Soon she was out of range of the insults. She was in the thick of the crowd now, marching with the faceless rhythm of those who work a lot and earn a little. The masses. Nobody paid any attention to her now. Everybody was walking fast, as though propelled by a common will. Now she relaxed, and as she let out that one big outflow of breath, for some reason a few tears accompanied it and blurred her vision. Surreptitiously her left hand came up to her eyes and, in one quick little motion, her thumb and forefinger, stroking inwards from the outer corners of both eyes, met at the top of the bridge of her nose, and her vision was restored. Yet she was angry.

She boarded the Molue and settled back uncomfortably between two market women on a seat that would surely have seated only two people conveniently, if convenience could ever be spoken of at all in connection with a Molue bus. But a fresh breeze sighed softly through the window as the bus gathered speed and left the hell-hole of a market behind.

… to be continued-

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

If you wish to skip the excerpts, and read the full length of this delicate modern African love Story – TWICE IS NOT ENOUGH – just order it on any Amazon store.