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I am Igbo

I am Igbo
Not because I am fair
Not because I am tall
…Or short

I am Igbo
Not because I travel a lot
Not because I live in hamlets
… And towns

I am Igbo
Not because I live in Africa
Not because I sell for profits
… Or for loss

I am Igbo
Not because I say so
Not because I am hated
… Or loved

I am Igbo
Because I am a culture
A tradition, not just a tribe
But a people,
A great people of God
A poet and a farmer
A technician and a scholar
Hope of the African race
Born through thick and thin
Fearing no man
But God who made all

I am tradition
A masquerade
In the village square

I am a stream
Flowing in peace
Washing mens nakedness

I am a hunter
Who dares wild beasts
And strikes with no fear

I am hope
Accompanied with faith
With the fear of God

I am a fisherman
Trailing my traps
Tucked away in creeks

I am a farmer
The one who feeds the clan
Eze-ji, king of yams!

I am the dibia, the physician
The one who heals
Throught the help of the Almighty

I am a rainmaker
A descendant
Of the shadows of men
Striving to be free

I am just a man
Who live quietly
Fearing no man or deity
But the One True God
I am Igbo!

Igbo Kwenu!

Learn Igbo language here.

Note:
The Igbo is a Southern tribe in Nigeria, renowned for their industry, entreprise and daring attitude. Basically the poet seems to link his tribes culture to religion. The Igbos are predominantly Christians and can be seen in every profession the world can offer.

Dibia: Locally called the medicine man or the herbalist feared and reverred in ancient times to possess powers beyond human comprehension.

Eze ji: The King of Yams.

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Jehovah

In the morning
Where all dreams are born
Through the late night slumber
Of lightnings, cold rains and thunder
He sends us Heavenly calm
Which is our balm

The clouds bring forth the rain
And the same harbors the sun
It rains, our clay gets softened
Breaking the mounds we made
It shines, our greens sprout
Letting the happy bean out

In the ‘noon
Comes the sun
The grey clouds become golden
Heavens warmth come to men
Both faun and flora rejoice
Amazed at the Lords grace

Men go about seeking bread
The Plains are tilled
The streams run across the border
Giving plenty of fresh water
The cows give milk to the thirsty
The land is full of corn and honey

In the evening
Comes scents of household dining
As the hamlets lamplights go out
And all quietness and gloom come about
Yet the comfort of the airs, are now milder
Because life was made to praise Jehovah!

And when we sit about tonight
As coal burns to bring us warmth
As the woods burn and sigh
We sing praises to Jehovah El-Shaddai
And in all time and mood
Oh Lord, You have been so good

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Haiku: Vain

Tonight it all became clear that the end was near
All seemed absurd and unnecessary vain here
The Earths’ toil, the men who strife
Asking what is the essence of life?

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Five Poems

The wind grows soft and dry
It passes messages fast forgotten
For in its speed, it is lost
The pines whistle, men stay to listen

When the fruits fall off the trees
It thunders upon the quiet ground
And little stray ants wonder
If the world had come to an end

If Grapes ever had loved
The thought would be, but who?
Would it be the strange sops
Or the ever table-sitting red tomato?

If the Sun stays late to rise
The clouds turn solemn and sad
And when I ponder on the gloom
I understand the plight of the world

If metals I and friends are to be
Gold, silver, variants all certain
Diamonds glittering in the pitch dark
An abstract I shall become behind the curtain

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The Rising Sun

I am looking towards the bright side of life
Where the trees grow on quiet sunny lands
With fruits weighing down the branches
And birds of pretty plumages singing, heartily

Down the rugged road stood a sight I admire most
A journey thro winding road, crisscrossing all about
By tall Earth mounds and thickly forested hills
With Heavens warmth keeping the hope burning

The Sun sets, the Sun wakes
A step and another
Smiles, pain, laughter, joy
The Dreams we started, it had just begun

If I happen upon you, dear friend and event
The Lord shall take all glory and honor
For in my dreams always I shall keep
The memories of you, my friend and event

And now, I stand at the cliff
Waiting, staring at the horizon, yes
I stand before the rising Sun
Which fights with the cloudy gloom

In the evening, when it is all done
A tale of courage and struggle would be told
To every friend and event I happen upon
My heart holds your memory forever

Oke’ Iroegbu

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The Gaze: Haiku

Staring into your eyes
Tells me of love undying
The love that stays in the heart
The beauty of the sight I see