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Africa, Poetry and Love opinion Pastoral Poetry

Cranky Old Man: Anonymous Poet

A brief intro

When an old man died in the geriatric ward of a nursing home in an Australian country town, it was believed that he had nothing left of any value. Later when nurses were going through his meager possessions, they found this poem. Its quality and content so impressed the staff that copies were made and distributed to every nurse in the hospital.

One nurse took her copy to Melbourne. The old man’s sole bequest to posterity has since appeared in the Christmas editions of magazines around the country and appearing in mags for Mental Health. A slide presentation has also been made based on his simple, but eloquent, poem. This old man, with nothing left to give to the world, is now the author of this ‘anonymous’ poem winging across the Internet.

Remember this poem when you next meet an older person who you might brush aside without looking at the young soul within. We will all, one day, be there, too!


What do you see nurses? What do you see?
What are you thinking when you’re looking at me?
A cranky old man… not very wise,
Uncertain of habit… with faraway eyes?
Who dribbles his food… and makes no reply.
When you say in a loud voice… ‘I do wish you’d try!’
Who seems not to notice… the things that you do.
And forever is losing… A sock or shoe?
Who, resisting or not… Lets you do as you will,
With bathing and feeding… The long day to fill?
Is that what you’re thinking? Is that what you see?
Then open your eyes, nurse. You’re not looking at me.
I’ll tell you who I am… As I sit here so still,
As I do at your bidding… as I eat at your will.
I’m a small child of ten… with a father and mother,
Brothers and sisters… who love one another
A young boy of sixteen… with wings on his feet
Dreaming that soon now… a lover he’ll meet.
A groom soon at twenty… my heart gives a leap.
Remembering, the vows… that I promised to keep.
At twenty-five, now… I have young of my own.
Who need me to guide… And a secure happy home.
A man of thirty… My young now grown fast,
Bound to each other… With ties that should last.
At forty, my young sons… have grown and are gone,
But my woman is beside me… to see I don’t mourn.
At fifty, once more… Babies play ’round my knee,
Again, we know children… My loved one and me.
Dark days are upon me… My wife is now dead.
I look at the future… I shudder with dread.
For my young are all rearing… Young of their own.
And I think of the years… And the love that I’ve known.
I’m now an old man… and nature is cruel.
It’s jest to make old age… Look like a fool.
The body, it crumbles… grace and vigour, depart.
There is now a stone… where I once had a heart.
But inside this old carcass… A young man still dwells,
And now and again… my battered heart swells
I remember the joys… I remember the pain.
And I’m loving and living… Life over again.
I think of the years, all too few… gone too fast.
And accept the stark fact… that nothing can last.
So open your eyes, people… open and see.
Not a cranky old man
Look closer… See… ME!!


PLEASE SHARE THIS POEM!
The best and most beautiful things of this world can’t be seen or touched. They must be felt by the heart!

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Africa, Poetry and Love opinion Poetry

Poets Corner: What have you gained writing Poetry?

Poetry

Poetry is a composition in verse or language exhibiting conscious attention to patterns. The bolded are key to understanding the true nature of poems. Poetry has been in existence for centuries. As an art that survived centuries, I was curious to find out why poems are written for so long. And to those who write them, what they benefit from it. So in this blog post we will focus on what a group of poets has to say on what they benefited from writing (poetry).

For me poetry is more than art…

Poetry is more than art. It can be produced and performed. It is styled and can rhyme. There’s a plot even. It tells stories. It creates fantasy and teaches in subtle ways. It has deeper meanings which may require a certain amount of attention and exposure for readers. Poetry made me see and understand life from a new perspective.

Poetry is rhythm played softly into the night by a lonesome guitarist. Poetry are songs that creates emotions, it understands the times we live in, and play life’s videos. Poetry is the soul of meditation and reflection. Poetry is a bucket where all other forms of art grow from.

Many authors have different definitions and ideas of poetry. But this post is focused on what poetry has done for poets.

What has poetry done for you?

Truth is that there are reasons why we do the things we do. Be it for fun or business.

I will start with Philip Philo Kassner. Poetry dissipated his anger, helped him organize his thoughts, gained confidence, put him on the stage and he met his wife. How poetry helped him meet his wife, he didn’t reveal but that’s sweet to me. Allanah-Elizabeth Higgins says “it cracked me open to the very core and allowed my souls highest expression to flow through me.” Rupal Caricature said that poetry made him find another better way to spend time alone. I can relate to this. Erin El Kalla said it gave her the confidence to be herself. Artie Shorts gratefully said “It has reminded me how very very clever I am. Thanks poetry!” Yaqub Muhktar opined, “Nothing materialistic… I enjoy its beauty and creating the beauty. Poetry has made me happy and more self confident. The joy of writing gladdens my mood.” Hear Helen Freya, “Writing it is currently helping me to work through some past trauma; reading it is helping me to connect to brilliant minds.” Evie Ivy said it made her world a beautiful place. Satischandran Matamp says “Some poems can heal and empower, breaking the glass ceiling. Some can bring hope to the disappointed and a breeze of consolation to the lost. Some poems are like sunrise, while some others are like the sunset. Final interpretation rests in the hands of the readers.” David Allen says “it gave me a great creative outlet and introduced me to some extremely interesting people.”

Arlene Rocero said that poetry helped keep her sanity. “It has helped me find out more of myself. It has helped me express my inner feelings and thoughts better by writing. It is significantly helping me a lot through my battles no one knows about.” Deborah Mears says “it made me laugh, cry, feel sad and mad. Brought out my creativity, humour and introspection. And I made lot of great friends.” Cozett Dunn has this point: “Allowed me to create in higher states of consciousness and express more of my true self.” Tracy Pflieger has this opinion: “I find that poetry is a way for me to hit my deepest emotions when I actually allow myself to get into the writing of it.” Kondwani Stanley Simwaba said it kept him alive. Kenneth Wright writes that “poetry provides a tangible connection to that place in the mind where problems too big for me are under constant review.”

John Green says “it made me laugh, it has made me cry. It has made me ponder adversity and to wonder why. It has made sit in silence and in awe, question the law, what has been established. Parts of society and those who have been black-listed. Colours of the rainbow, LGBTQ, what people have been through, and what I have no clue. Lives touched by violence, touched by love, touched by more adversity, and those who have seen push come to shove. Where has poetry taken me? On journeys most never want to experience. The pious, the fake, the real, and the deviant. I don’t relish where I have been, it creates a pickle. It either pours down troubles or it is a slight trickle.” That’s a pretty serious one, don’t you think? For Sara Bourland it helped her heal from serious traumatic brain injuries. Paul Gardiner says it opened his mind. Paul Armando Gabuat says it made him a better writer. Here is Steve Howards: “Provided me with yet another neurological gibberish translation device.” Jarmara Black said “it kept me reasonable sane through some very tough times.” Beaux Thorburn said it showed her inherent talent and (which) is so good for venting. Justin Robert said “not to be dramatic, but it has saved my life.”

Hobby Jones says, “I never thought to look at it that way, but it’s done a lot – taught me to read closely and write carefully, helped me parse my own thoughts and feelings, given me fresh perspectives on the world (inside and out), filled my mind with ideas and my heart with song, and provided many, many hours of mindful pleasure. So, thanks, Poetry! You have my undying gratitude.” Alex Silverstein opined “The poem is the prize from having something that was awful to deal with or it can be an expression of appreciation for something good that has happened. What has it done for me? Made me me a little more brave by sharing how vulnerable.” Josh Smith says “It gives me a space to express how I feel without worry of being judged. Words I’d like to say to people, but can’t, or wouldn’t know how to word it otherwise.” Kristy Lewandoski says “Given light, helped me to understand things that I couldn’t name on my own, helped me not to feel alone, made me feel alive, feel inspired, taken me on adventures, given roads to empathy and insight into life and humanity. So much!”

Steven M. Mwalusi has this to say ” it made me find another way of living. It will outlast me and speak to future generations.” I sincerely adore the outlasting part. Mohammed Ahmed Daldoum says “I use what I write to understand myself, it helped me to cope with life and overcome my insecurities.”

For me it has connected me to people whom ordinarily I wouldn’t have met. I became confident in my writing and can imagine anything.

What is your take on this? How has poetry benefited you as the writer?

Featured Poems:

DEADLIEST CRAFT by Colin Smith

To scream softly is the poet’s gift — one of whispers so gentle as to shatter illusions, then to expose the power of truth and beauty.

The poets of war have held the souls of so many. Yet the poets of love, for a moment, have stilled the hearts of lovers yet to be.

Simple poetry in natural form describes the elegance of a tree or anything as it may be.

Poetry is the science of language sharpened, the expression of Gods, as the ancients now speak to those who care to listen.

Practice this most deadly craft, for it can stir an army to sweet victory.

The Wife I Never Had by Bernard Arkoh Asante

Poetry turned my pain into art
After I lost someone I loved dearly
My college girlfriend called Ruby
To another man, Another Bernard
The pain was the genesis of this special gift
As I let the blood within my veins
Flow through my pen, I scribbled my first masterpiece in fine piece like Italian tapestry.

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love folklore Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry Series

Tale of Wild Woods: Summer Arrives

When summer finally came, a lot had changed
The last snow melted and the sad land woke
Grasses started growing, covering the outer earth
So those who burrow scrambled out from the dust
Soft airs and tidings surround the mountainside
Sending sweet emissaries around the valley below
Vines, myrrh, mistletoes and pines sprout happily
In the morning, the sunshine will not glitter on ice,
Instead the heat grew and the wood inhabitants felt it
First, the Squirrels thought the world was going crazy
And their cousins, the burrow rats seconded them
‘The frog choir will soon resume’, a brown Cricket observed
‘And if they do I am going to go crazy!’ a Sparrow replied
‘Not if they played on a softer note at least’
A Linnet added to the conversation
‘No way, they have all got bass! Male, female all bass!!’
A sad Bee, which sat on the tip of a tree leaf answered
Now, fresh grass brought the Deers and mountain goats
At the Otherside across the rocky land, the Stream flowed
Leaps of water, joyful that her prisoner had let her free
‘Crap! I mean did anyone notice that the cats are back?’
Some stray mice broke the niches silence
‘They have our land smeared with urine, them Bobcats!’
‘Yes, they think it is their fatherland. Well we better hide’
Now the wolf pack had no cold anymore
So they prowled the earth with more ease
Picking trails of rodents through the thick woods
The Mountain stood, usually a still, motionless figure
One that kept some admirers intrigued
As the ice melted, water trickled down to the land
And the wild wood fauna felt sad for her
For they believed she was weeping at her loss
‘She has been like this since the Ice King left’,
The soft voiced black and white Pigeons sang
‘She is heartbroken! Why will the Ice King be so cruel?
He even took her icy cloak and see, now… now she is naked!’
A duck said closing the eyes of her young with feathers
‘I think she looks pretty amazing, so much joy in pain
No one cares much enough, I think she needs a hug’
A tortoise with a huge shell opined
‘No she needs a gift’, the Wolf pack alpha barked
‘She is the worst person I ever met!’ he added
The other animals had to retreat to their homes
Or if you are too small or slow, just find a hideout
For the wolf pack, the villains of the valley
Had no mercy and they do as their word sound
‘What do we offer her, a fine rose shrub maybe?’
Another wolf suggested as the roses around hid
‘No, well anything. If she continue that way
I bet you the streams will overflow and we will have no land
To hunt, to plunder and to rule!’
‘Well, if being solitary is the best way of getting rid of vermin
Then it is the best shot at self discovery’
The philosophical Woodpecker reasoned from the tree top

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love opinion Pastoral Poetry reflection

July Wishes

Dear Friends,

I’m grateful that we made it to July 2020. You’ll agree that the year has been a stressful one. I hope you’re well and keeping safe. Don’t be anxious, things will make sense soon and we’ll live to testify.

Few hours before new year, I made a wish that I wanted to see a happy me in a peaceful world. New year arrived with a Greek gift. While we got news of this strange virus, I lost my elder sister and several relatives. I even lost several academic and career opportunities. Then came global rioting and demonstration caused by the killing of George Floyd in America. The world wallowed in suspicion, distrust and economic warfare. We never had it this tough for decades. I’ve never seen anything like it.

The outbreak exposed human fallibility. We trusted so much in science. The outbreak exposed that human activities hurt our environment. Yes it exposed science and its weakness. It exposed that we only love in lip service. It exposed how selfish, ignorant and wicked hearts of men can be. It exposed that governments don’t really care about the people. It exposed the beast – greed in man. Nature recovers slowly. We can’t help much, but we can encourage it.

As the world face a pandemic that knows either creed nor colour, we need to love more and show strong faith. Love is mother of all good things. Yes, the world can heal with love and faith gives the assurance of a better tomorrow.

July is here and we’ll surely progress through it. Remain focused on your goals. Show compassion. Be kind. Be courteous. Forgive freely. Remember the destitute, the homeless, the ones without food and clothing, when you give. Pray for one another.

I have this prayer for you: The sun, the moon and the stars will shine for your good. Divine Providence shall protect you. You shall prosper in good health and riches even more than your expectations. My soul rejoices with you for great testimonies. Happy new month.

With Love,

Oke’

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Africa Africa, Poetry and Love haiku love poems nature poems Poetry

Haiku: Home

Night fall dreams
A ride through moonshine
Home may tell tales

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Africa, Poetry and Love opinion Pastoral Poetry

Writing a Poem by David Thane Cornell

Writing a poem
is like picking flowers
in a minefield.
Lay down your life
spread-eagled,
so that the grass,
sharp as syllables,
won’t cut you.
Let your fingers
test the soil.
Don’t tug at the roots.
Seize adjectives
for hostages,
negotiable at the border
between war and peace,
leading you
all the way back
to silence.


DAVID THANE CORNELL
Copyright 2012, 2020.

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love lifestyle Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry

Path to Harvest – Poem

Joy is fruit blossomed in the heart of farmers
Their smiles are meshed with toil and sweat,
Patch of earth print upon their faces
And on shoulders they carry huge baskets
Marching towards the fields, when it is harvest…

Fields are ripe, and trees are heavy with fruit
Birds sing from tree tops, monkeys dance it out
Evergreen forest is alive, farmers walk their path
Marching through mist, grass, and animal dung
The morning path led through cool streams,
Farmers may stoop to have a taste of water
Which smell like a mixture of dust and dew
The path led the farmers deeper into forest land,
Where shrubs are scanty, trees more numerous,
With thriving bird colonies, Nature’s secret hives
Bamboo forests stand aghast, daring the farmers
Waterfalls drop water balls which bounce off rocks
Once, they arrived the plantation, work must begin
When they sang of places, far far away
Where wheat are gold and cow milk immaculate,
They whistle country music while they gather grain
At last harvest became a pile waiting to go home

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love love poems nature poems Poetry

And So I Fly by Robin Bliss

When I am
Downtrodden.
Trampled into the mud.
Deserted by all.
Misunderstood.
Left for dead.
Despised.
Forgotten.

You! My beloved,
Are there for me.
Your love,
Lifts me up.
Rising above,
The mud and mire.
Your love is,
Unending,
And I fly.

Soaring on Gossamer
Wings so high.
You never let me down,
And I fly,
Far, far above,
All troubles and cares.
Into the realms,
Eternal I go.

Drifting upwards.
Into the infinite,
Eternal love.
Love that embraces all.

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love love poems Nature nature poems opinion Pastoral Poetry

I am Poetry

I am needle, needless of pain, driving through fabric, to create a happy stitch,

I am dance, sometimes something sane, twists and turns, breaking within or without,

I am fury, memories may wane, trust on mere ink and paper, pale but yet transparent

I am innocence, a cry too soon, living for the weak, suns glam and joyous warmth

I am poetry, needle for needless pain, innocent cry not heard, dance within sanity and fury of many spirits


Happy Father’s day 👪

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love love poems nature poems Poetry rhyme

Poets Corner: Why is Poetry Less Popular?

HOW I CAME TO LOVE POETRY

As an introverted teen I found solace in writing. All my thought was written in form of poetry. I also wrote poetry for my faculty and student magazines. Fast forward to many years, I submitted my first story and poetry to two different competitions. I didn’t make the shortlist for the short story contest but made third place in a National Poetry competition! Since then I decided to focus more on poetry. I made Google my friend and looked up local and international writing competitions. There were many story writing (prose) contests split into fiction and non fiction with huge cash prizes! The same went for drama competitions with mouth-watering prizes, but this was not the case for poetry. I mean there are poetry contests out there but few offered good prize money.

MY OPINION

That little story of mine formed the basis for my argument that poetry is not as popular as other literary genres. I won’t draw only from my experience. So I decided to engage my friends and mentors on long discussions. I also stayed late nights in many Poetry Groups to brainstorm with other poets. At the end I was able to collate some of their thoughts. I will share them here.

OTHERS OPINION

My first contact was Diego Donati, who believes that “to appreciate poetry you need to be sensitive and speak from the heart. And not many people are like that.” Mark Priestly provided a similar answer to Diego’s with a rhetorical question, “Because it only appeals to the poetic?” I thought so too. But must one be poetic to accept poetry? Soumya Naik supported Mark’s position as he believed that only poetic minds can understand the emotions in a poem.

My friend Steve Stone believes that good poetry makes people think and most are too lazy to be bothered with that.

“I think partially because it doesn’t get as much exposure because it doesn’t sell as well as the other genres. I think that might have to do with Rock and Roll becoming popular in the mid-50’s. Again with Rap and Hip Hop exploding on the music scene in the early 80’s. If there’s no market for it no one is going to promote so less people are going to discover it and read it.” Steve Howard aptly put.

Sarah Mulqueen quipped, “It doesn’t have to be written ‘correctly’, it has a law all of it’s own which I know drives my mother crazy.”

“I would have to say because it is often ambiguous and open to more than one interpretation. My cure for that is to write using common language in uncommon ways.” Tate Morgan supported. Kiran Sharan has this to say: “Perhaps because it’s much more difficult to encapsulate your feelings or thought processes in a few lines as compared to prose where you can ramble on and on unless of course you’re writing an Iliad an Odyssey a Mahabharata or a Paradise Lost.”

August Hill was more radical in his approach. “People are too stupid to understand metaphors and symbolism, they fall asleep with the rhythm if a poem is well done because instead of listening their mind can’t concentrate that much, honestly I’d argue mostly they just hear the rhymes. That’s my take actually.”

He went further to elaborate. “For what it’s worth the other day I was looking for a poetry circle in my city. Figured I’d look on the paper and internet and all I could find was articles about “Is poetry a dead art in my country.” So I’m not as optimistic as all the folks that say that poetry is up there. Plus if you look at it historically most poets that were historically and literary consequential died in complete poverty, mistreated by their society to the point of starving to dead, dying of disease or being chased away by their family. So this isn’t something new.

In the words of the French poet Baudelaire, “A poem never was worth bread.” I think it’s because of the abstract nature of poetry, a good poem is worthless because it cannot have a price on it, not because it is mind feaces, but because literally a good poem is world changing, and nobody could ever own a gift to humanity. Which is precisely the nature of poetry.” I agree with this. He went further.

“It’s not that poverty is part of the life of a poet, it’s just that we are forced into it and we find peace of mind through poetry. I’d say, if you wanna make money definitely don’t try to do it through poetry, now if you want to glance behind the veil of reality or if you have a message for the world, that’s a good motivation for poetry. You’ll be disappointed if you seek wealth through it, but if you know you seek something greater you’ll never be disappointed and you probably will reach it without even noticing it. People around you will tell you, you made it, and it will mean more than all the money in the world.

At the same time I wrote hundreds of poems, and what I noticed is that if you really want to write, you must write to write, not write for fame, not for money, not even for recognition… at best if you find kindred spirits you can share. But even then poems are not meant to be understood by a reader the way a poet writes.” August concluded.

“From my point of view (I am not dismissing how you see it) well admired is a bit of a stretch. I think people who like and admire poetry are few and far between and they might feel like it’s well admired because perhaps they see it more in their own lives. I feel like If I think about the entire country, football would be well admired and poetry, liked by some.” Emily Simmance said.

Akua Daps has this to say, “I think part of it is that people have lost the appreciation for the beauty of its interpretation. People want to be shown and told how to view it. Ex. Descriptive books and movies. Vs. How poetry takes your mind on a journey. People aren’t taught the literary tools to dissect poetry like back in the day.”

Luke Fallow has this to say, “Because a certain type of poetry has been perpetuated which is really self indulgent and depressing, so people assume all poetry is just writing about how sad you are.”

In the words of Steve Anc, “People prefer direct communication, but poets had twisted that already.
Therefore, they are confused.” Benjamin Davis supports this “It takes almost as much skill to read and comprehend it as it does to write it.” Cassandra Cassy added that “It’s more difficult to understand both in meaning and language. It seems boring to readers.”

For Michael Walsh poetry is a mystery for most people. “I mean, we do have the quite simple poem written about a simple subject, and anyone reading it is quite certain of what it is about.

On the other hand, we have a number of different types of poetry. Some almost never to be understood properly, and often no real idea about what it is about. I suppose in that regard, poetry is very similar to Paintings and Drawings. To some a simply painting is beautiful, whilst some you have to stand in your head with one eye closed, and still not get it. I think the ability to read poetry is probably a much harder skill than it is to write it.

In all of these matters we are talking about not just cerebral pursuits, but also entertainment. And people being entertained do not usually like to work too hard. For then, it is no longer entertainment, but work; and often very hard work. And people do not expect to have work to be entertained; those two for most people are diametrically opposed. People like to see and feel what is going on, and in the broad field of reading and writing, most prefer a good novel to read. It is there in front of you, and is relaxingly simple. Poetry, in a very general sense, is not easy, and it can be very hard or even impossible to understand. So what is the point? There is the adventure poem. I will refer here to poem about a horse in Australia. Not last century now, but the one before. Two movies about it. “The Man From Snowy River”. This is a long poem. Literally, a novel in a poem. It has an upbeat feel to it, some uncommon language, but by the end if it, you feel like you have ridden the horse. The poem literally gallop along. By the end, the heart is pumping, the breathing fast. You knew what you had done. One of my favourite forms of poetry.

And let’s face it, some poetry does absolutely nothing for me, and I love poetry.”

Ahmed Jouini gave a support response. “It’s less popular because it requires more effort from the audience than the other genres: in cinema you have everything in front of you; in music you can just zone out and keep listening as long as there is a catchy beat or some rhymes etc. This is just one of the reasons.” Abraham Conneh added further, “Poetry is either appreciated or not depending on people’s perception of it. If fuel and spiced well with some visual lay minds grasped its value. More exposure may get people to consider its value.” Also John Green has this to say, “The fact is, many people want something that is 100% tangible, direct, and doesn’t require thinking in the abstract with multiple meanings being possible.”

Nola Alvaro quipped that “Poetry is to be savoured in small amounts like the finest of wines.”

Marrero has this to say, “Cause people just don’t like to express themselves. Poets are realists. Most people ain’t. And not only that, but I believe it goes by generation. This generation is too distracting. Too many things going on around us. This is the era of modern technology, and mind altering substances. The list goes on, but you get my point.”

Colin Ward‘s opinion: “There are a number of reasons why English language poetry was entirely subsumed by song lyrics during the 20th century. Copyright law began the decline, the pseudointelligensia’s fascination with cryptocrap accelerated it, and the education system administered the coup de grâce when it ceased teaching its elements”

Ch’erie de Perrot‘s view is that lyrics for songs are written from poetry, tweaked of course to avoid copyright. “We are the inspiration of many authors, musicians, directors and movie producers. Alas, the underpaid brilliance behind so much, but for the love of it all, we keep going, and laugh when we see a slogan even on an advertisement… Smile to self.”

Tia Papillion agreed with my opinion. “A lot of non poets only seek poetry and interested by it till they actually need it or reach that point. A lot of people would rather go to get a love book v/s reading a love poem they don’t understand. Of course don’t have to be about love, but a lot of people think that’s all poetry is good for.”

‘OTHERWISE POETS’

Some poets like Benjamin Allhands thought otherwise because “Popular and or return on investment is difficult. Unless you self publish getting a book off is hard. Some spend decades trying.” Also James Horton argued that “there are elements of poetry in other literary genre.” I totally agree.

When Jay McDaid gave his opinion, it was completely otherwise. “That is simply untrue. It’s well liked. What you are thinking of is the fact that people are less likely to purchase poetry books. That happened when pulp fiction became the common denominator rather than the lowest. One need only drop into a gift card shop to see how popular the primitive verse is.”

Godswill Iren argued further; “That’s not true. Poetry comes first in the origin of the genres. Drama came through festivals and rehearsals which became adopted as a form of entertainment. But before that poetry existed through folklores and chants from praise singers. Songs and epic stories told in poetry form was the original work before other forms like prose developed.” Pretty insightful, right?

Haider Farooq opined that “Poetry is the fundamental reason of creations. Poetry is most popular. Even we like to listen to songs not fiction. We read fiction and sing poetry.” When I asked him why publishers prefer other genres. He replied “Please be informed that I’m not opposing other genres however, the publisher is a business man so he accommodates all.”

Kim Fleming bluntly disagreed. “I don’t agree! Poetry is usually about love it is the most exalted art form! Most of all religious scriptures of the world are in part or in whole poetry, and most song lyrics are poetry, look at how important love poetry is in religion and in song. Humankind has a natural desire to express the most exalted truth in verse and many songs are religious in theme. Personally I love Neil Diamond. He is my favourite singer/songwriter! I practically worship this guy. No matter who you are you have a favourite singer/ songwriter, I’ll wager!”


Knowledge is power, knowledge shared is power multiplied. – Robert Noyce.

That’s it for today at Poets’ Corner. What’s your opinion?

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Africa Africa, Poetry and Love folklore lifestyle Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry quotes

Lullaby: Tale of the young Shepherdess

I will tell you a rhyme of the shepherdess who loved her sheep,

She lives in the country and could sing her community to sleep

Twinkle went stars nested far up the pregnant black sky,

When black clouds float, the gathering rain storm sigh,

“It will rain, but it might wait a little,” the young shepherdess prayed

She saw the stars disappear from the midst of black clouds

So quickly she led her tired sheep through the barn door

“Up you go, up you go, quickly climb up the dry hay, up you go”

She took the lamb up the higher stairs where a big lamp hung

The little ones nuzzle, when the shepherdess struck up a song

The country was not so far away, everyone could hear her sing,

And how she sang heartily, that the hamlet relaxed with the eerie wind

Suddenly a stronger wind blew and gave the little community a cold push

“Ah, it’s perfectly monstrous weather,” she said when it gave another swoosh

“I must retire before the storm catch me here,” the shepherdess exclaimed

“But tell me what you will like to see in your beautiful dreams,” she asked

And so because they won’t speak or maybe know nothing to say

They only looked on, blinked sheepishly, then maaa-aa away

Categories
lifestyle Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry

Morning Wind

Morning wind, crisp smell,
Moist dew, sun rise, beautiful land
Take it all in and live in it,
Inhale deeply before it’s gone

Categories
Africa lifestyle Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry

African Dawn

**

Slope of pointed hills
Black against the horizon
Threat the sun with its fierce thrust
As thin clouds streak across the sky

**

Cloud underbellies glow reddish hue
Morning warmth fight the heady moon
Wide plains stretched, savannah grass paradise
Sometimes lonely trees stand with yellow grass

Ancient, raw, scattered lights slowly gather
The city below, hills stand guard like a soldier
Listen now, the Tsetse cause morning stress
But the heat will send her away with its grease
The road are shaded by thick groves of eucalyptus and vine
Nearby, human settlement; houses, huts are intertwined

Smell of ripe fruit romance the market pathway
Tomatoes gutted, grapes squashed on the clay
And when the hills let the sun rise above them
It is gold- unexplainable, like a budding worm

Again, when the humble morning rise from her sleep
The sun will rise from lands of the unknown deep
Smiling at the town she left for her solitary slumber
Yet she leaves all; fauna, flora to gracefully wonder

Now there is light, the brown Earth bright
And on all things old, the sun shines her gold

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry

Palm Tree

Beautiful ornament, guardian of my land
I salute you gladiator,
My great warrior!
Your strong fronds are high
To shade the village from heat,
You stand on those ancients hills
A pillar rooted deep into earth,
Little forests grow, here and there,
You tower over all, trees and fauna,
But yet a citadel for great and small,
You gather a parliament over our hamlet,
Where you precede as king of all
Stretching your kindness across valleys,
Your roots are seats for farmers
It provides succour for travelers,
It is said that you are close to skies
Because you must keep her from falling,
So I now know why they treat you as a deity
Ancient as hills that you tower over, a tree-god

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love lifestyle love poems Nature nature poems Nigeria Pastoral Poetry

Orie Market Day

It’s Orie day here. Orie is a big market day in Isuikwuato. Everybody will be heading to the market to trade. People from different places buy and sell here. I walk through the quiet hills to get some fresh air and pick some flowers.

Thankfully I have the quiet road to myself. I also have imagined poems for these majestic hills and diverse flora. There’s a deep pond close by, it gave a sweet smell of dry clay mixed with water. I will pass. I am not a fan of ponds.

I have noticed new farms. I have seen several farmers till their fertile land. I helped tie up yams and process cassava. These past few days I have only eaten fresh vegetable and fruits grown here. I will seldom see fresh food in town.

This is one of the hills sheltering Umukwu Amune, Ovim. There are more just around the bend. This explains why it’s cold all morning and night. During noon time, the sun is hot. As I write, I sit under thick foliage to listen to different birds and draft down poems. Indeed nothing compares to quiet places. Stay tuned for more poems.

Categories
Africa lifestyle love poems Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry Series tips

Nature’s Kindness

Bird songs, colourful butterflies and sun rays,
Are fruits from Nature’s basket of kindness,
To man, his clan she gave tranquility and peace

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love haiku Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry

Haiku: I touch the sky

Clouds mock me
Yet I touch the sky,
I have no wings

Categories
Africa folklore lifestyle love poems Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry Series

Amuse: Tomato Poem

Today I met this round twins, sumptuous red fruit
By the garden they grew, so I’ll make a muse for it.

1.

Hanging down hopelessly as their weight was a clear burden,
Close to a busy ant hole, where ants traversed without care,
Their redness portray the sun’s ire but they seem quite unperturbed
I looked at them again, they bounced about, shy, when the wind pushed
A huge fly buzzed above them, loudly, bothering me that stood far off
They stared back at me, blushing with the loud fly, I shrugged
‘Well, hello. You’ve seen enough already. What do we owe your gaze?’
‘I’m just a passerby, I happened to notice an unusual beauty in my garden’
‘Oh okay, the last time we checked we ain’t in a museum that’s why we asked’
They seem embarrassed on my presence, I also felt same too
Toh, your beauty has dumbfounded me, forgive me fair tomato,
‘I haven’t seen much of anyone, who combined both grace and grass in such beauty’,
With a wave of their leaves, I think they danced or maybe, just accepted my apology

2.

Now if I let myself ponder on their puny life, how lonely they seem,
Fulfilling though that they sat on good clay, and the wind their bossy anchor
Yet, I came to learn from them, of their benevolence to saucy and noisy neighbours,
Their humility and perseverance in stubborn winds and intruders,
Their patience in the warm sun, the embarrassing ways passersby stare at their nakedness
And their compassion as a citadel to bees, ants and man who find them a delicacy
This tomato had made me fall in love, not just with my heart, but with my stomach too

Categories
Africa love poems Nature nature poems Pastoral Poetry rhyme Series

When Waterfalls sing

I told trees of your songs and they are jealous,
When you drop, birds and the wild stop to listen,
To hear you sing a melody from the long fall
And watch you wash your garment on the rush below

Categories
Poetry proverbs quotes reflection

Quote: Compassion & Confidence

Categories
Africa love poems Nature nature poems opinion Pastoral Poetry

Traveler

is.jpg

The traveler is like the sun
Which traverse the length of Earth,
Seen her people, food and cultures
He is like a blast of the wind
Blowing cold and hot at times
And fine dust is his companion
The traveler is like a compass
Searching for North pole
Seeking gladly new lands
The traveler is a big book
Though he may have read little
Pass for a walking encyclopaedia


Image taken from http://www.wiautism.com

Categories
Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Poetry reflection rhyme

The Day May End But Not Our Love

image

Look into my eyes
And see how special you are
Feel my heart jump with joy
That is because you are here
Let’s watch the setting sun
Let’s admire her jealous laughter,
With a kiss she says a goodbye
The day may end but not our love


For everyone who loves genuinely. Love your neighbor as yourself.

Categories
culture/tradition lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry reflection rhyme tips

Imagining Love

Imagine riding a horse into sunset
Or sitting with kids to hear rare stories
Or listening to country late into the night
Or picking beautiful flowers & berries,

With the one you truly love…

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Categories
Africa lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry

A Tree Poem

Sitting under a long leafy tree
On a mild and serene noon
With Nature’s finest creatures;
A stray buzzing bee,
A colony of black ants,
A handful of wild mushrooms,
And some twittering birds
Cool breeze blew at intervals
Bringing smell of cattle to me
While tree leaves tried to see
Those who took refuge under her shade
Blushing at the admiration on our eyes,
Falling off in excitement and glee
While fruits dangle with the wind.
What sight and moment it is!
Of cute plumage on birds,
Or a quiet and calm noon
With man enjoying a tree’s warmth!


Image by ‘Jindu Iroegbu

Originally written: March 14, 2015

Categories
lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature opinion Pastoral Poetry reflection

Warm Hugs from Africa


Dear Friends,

We wake up to awful happenings around the world. The media churn out stories that make people sick. Nothing makes sense anymore. For the past few months horrible things had happened. We lost many good things and people.

But don’t despair, don’t give up yet. There’s still good in the confusion, we need to keen our minds to see it. This cold morning I send warm hugs, prayers and thoughts your way. Stay safe and sane, trusting that things will make sense soon.

Please send someone a beautiful message of hope and love. Let’s a have a beautiful week ahead.

From Africa with Love ❤
Oke’
Categories
Nature Pastoral Poetry

Little Frog

image

Oh little looking weebly-woobly Frog
Jumping about on a quiet blue lake
Dob-wob, Dob-wob‘, it croaked into evening
Calling to all nature’s big and small,
For some short but lively weebly-woobly dance

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Image provided by Mary Grace M. Salomes, MGMS.

I decided to write a short piece for children. My friend, Mary from The Philippines had long taught her neighborhood children this poem.

Categories
Africa education haiku lifestyle Nature opinion Poetry reflection rhyme Series

What I think of Poverty (Poetry)

What if I told you a poem of poverty
Will you wave it off and call me silly?
I will tell you what I think
Why communities continue to sink,
School children trek miles to get a bus
Their worn-out shoes make it worse,
Bright girls will deliberately miss school
Sanitary pads their excuse, without it a woe,
There is a lad sitting near the street bend
His foot sore, his hair torn in the wind,
He is a victim of poverty, he has no home
So he and others sit it out, in rain and storm,
Slavery, a grandchild of poverty takes
People, in order to help for goodness sake,
She humbly breaks the back of hard-working men
And throw their conquered will into her mothers den,
Cold night won’t help anyone either
She is cruel to both the rich and the pauper,
Poverty gave a meal once a day
To wish deceitful luxuries away,
If poverty was a product and so man-made
It is dished as soup in fancy bottles of pomade,
Now will you sit with me and reason
About wealth that is tactfully hidden
And enjoyed by those we trust with votes?
You will agree that poverty is not by choice

Categories
Nature Pastoral Poetry rhyme

Night rain

rain

Now it rains heavily with thunder,
And with cold, her breezy messenger,
I watch the rain fall from my window,
Fast, soft drops crash into glass panes
This heavy rain ploughed, and sow,
Her lullabic seeds across my land,
Soft, sweet breezes reign with her
Battling a stranger for his umbrella,
In pitch darkness cover, so to mar
The path of this wary stranger
I pity but wait to see this little drama
While it rain heavily with thunder!

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Image from http://www.erdaren.com

Categories
lifestyle Pastoral Poetry reflection rhyme

Draw the Sun

summer-sun-wallpapers-1024x768

Draw the golden sun, let it shine on dreams,
Trust little beginnings, hope for the best,
Reach for the stars, live this colorful dream

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Categories
Poetry

Forgiveness: The Interview

Dear Friends,

Here goes a beautiful story that teaches forgiveness and compassion. I hope you enjoy it. Have a beautiful June 2020.

Love ❤

Oke


Six years ago a guy looked at me face to face, and boldly told me; “I don’t like you!”

I immediately fired a response, I asked him that day; “Thank you for the honest feedback, but those that you like, how has it made their life better? How does your liking people pay their bills or take a bank loan? Brother keep your like, I only need God’s love and that’s what guarantees my future.”

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One day I joined a CEO friend of mine in an interview panel to recruit some new staff, it was a long session. As we returned from a coffee break to continue the hectic interview session, here was this same guy walked in with his grey jacket and CV coming for the interview.

Our eyes kissed by fluke, we immediately recognised each other; “the world is indeed spherical”, I soliloquized.

He felt very uncomfortable through out the interview, one could clearly see the volcanic eruption ongoing in his whole nervous system, he even mistook his date of birth for his last date of employment.

It wasn’t yet my turn to ask him questions so I allowed everyone to take their turns with him and deliberately opted to interview him last.

When it got to my turn, the first thing I said was, “I like you so much, you look to me like a brilliant and intelligent person, but it seems you are not doing well now because something bothers you, true?”

“That’s very correct Sir!” He responded.

“OK look at me straight in the eye, I was never offended that day, it is very normal that sometimes as humans you just don’t like certain people, but I wasn’t bothered either, because whether you liked me or not, it was inconsequential to my life and my success path – as you can see, fate has brought you to my lair.”

I stood up and beckoned him to come and embrace me, everyone on the panel at this point were at sea – wondering if we had expeditiously recast an interview session to a Hollywood movie scene.

He hugged me so long and deeply that I felt it. Then I told him, “now get your confidence back bro and answer the questions like a Pro Shark that you are, we all burst into laughter, everyone suddenly liked him and the room became livelier – the interview became more like a discussion, well to cut the long story short, he got the job!

Lessons:

1. Be careful how you treat people when they appear to be in their vulnerable state, your next level may be hanging in their balance; somewhere in the future.

2. If you dislike someone, it is not their fault, it is your fault, work on yourself to find good in people and reinvent your mind to see everyone as likeable.

3. Don’t spew hatred vocally just because it came into your heart, you may say it to someone who will keep it forever and use it against you when you find yourself in your own low moments and need them.

4. Learn to forgive, overlook people’s dislike and hatred for you, don’t punish people just because you have the position and privilege to do so, bless them rather – that’s how you court God’s blessings, favour and protection.

5. Share this post, someone needs it to heal from their past burdens of unforgiveness they have been carrying which has been hindering their promotions and inhibiting God’s blessings flowing their way!

Categories
Africa culture/tradition education folklore Nature Pastoral Poetry

Amuse: African Ostrich

1.
To you my feathery friend I write
In greying fields your fur I sight
Dangling by your sides are wings,
A tall neck, from which you may sing

2.
Caw caw, caw caw are your favourite words
The wind is your friend, the soil your playground,
The shrub is home, to it you rest when weary,
Your legs are strong, your claws even deadly

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3.
Evenings are for your quick runaways
You send stray rodents scampering away
I am not ashamed of your beautiful bald head
But you my fluffy friend, you are an amazing bird

4.
In the morning your scent fill the farmyard
You stand taller than scarecrows in our land

To have you here, beautiful and tall bird
Is a queer muse, but one of absolute good

Categories
Africa culture/tradition education folklore Lessons from Experiences lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Poetry

Love knows no colour

Love knows no pink, no blue, no colour; it knows no creed, no silence, no mumblings, no religion or association. It will learn nothing that brings shame or pain or hurt to others and one’s environment.

Love preys on no one, it knows no greed and no self. Like fresh leaves falling quietly away from the mother tree, love spreads gifts of kindness and compassion wherever it goes.

Love someone genuinely today.

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Categories
Africa haiku Nature Poetry

Haiku: Happy Hawk

Happy hawk surf,
King of blue clouds, wind
While silence look on

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Categories
lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry

You’re my Style

I know beautiful words are healing to the soul, but I write not because words are beauty but for your beautiful self. So I want you to sit back and enjoy this rhyme, this African style. Everyone has got a style, loving you by beautiful words is my style.

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Categories
culture/tradition education lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry Series

Quote: Pride & Humility

Pride is the father of shame
Humility is the father of fame

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Categories
Africa culture/tradition education lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry

Four Poems: Let’s Take A Walk

I. OUR TRYST

Breezes bring your memory; mild rosy fragrance,
The wind sing with you when you sang of the Nightingale
And now we wait to tryst, craving beautiful sunset

II. HAPPY MEETING

We must make haste, for night is a cold stranger,
For the great Baobab where our love blossomed,
Cold nights steal our warmth but time will keep memories
Of our merry evenings; me, you, beneath a pretty moon shine

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III. LET’S PLAY

Now let’s play hide and seek before the youth arrive for tonight’s tale
Let’s cuddle while we wait for happy girls and grumpy boys,
This night I shall surely bare my mind, I’ll have no timidity
And if my wit tries to escape from me I’ll take hold of it

IV. MY JEWEL

I’ve not come to hear stories nor see anyone but you:
My Jewel, I’m your Lion, the one who loves you in silence
And before this night tales are spent
We’ll live our Romeo and Juliet!

Categories
Nature Pastoral Poetry

Such is Love

Nothing can explain this wild feeling
One hungry embrace,
Heart beats to same rapturous tune
Of man and woman in love,
One with Nature…
And one with the night of fiery frost,
Of glittering stars, or a rising moon,
Such is love by the dark silent lake
The beginning and end of the world

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Categories
Africa Nature Pastoral Poetry

Muse: I Wonder

I wondered, too, what I had ever done to deserve the special love of this very special girl. When I used to think about you before this day happened – it had been as of a rather splendid but inaccessible young goddess of the hills and dales – the incarnation of all beauty, and truth; the spirit of Mother Nature, herself.

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Categories
Nature Pastoral Poetry

Finding Joy by Arunav Barua

Between you and me, truth be told, I see
An emptiness that begs to be undone, free
This moment here, the waves battle on in time
To fill the void, weapons are words forming lines
Can I ask for some token of understanding now
Let us fill this empty space, without caring how!

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Rhythm is joy, so it has come to be known here
In this land of emptiness, even so, you’re held dear
The void gives us a chance to connect the heart
All it takes are a few words, to learn a giving art
In this realm, the possible chances loving fate
Is today the same as it was then, or just a date?

Together let’s dream the honeyed dream of love
I hear the chirp, the time nigh for the white dove…

(c) Arunav Barua (I.I.T Guwahati, North Guwahati, Assam)

Categories
Africa culture/tradition Nature Pastoral Poetry

Namaqualand, Beautiful Namibia

I see light fell from the sky
On the wind I heard a sigh…Image @ChristurtleboyesStart a blog here.