Categories
Africa Nature Pastoral Poetry

Swift Breezes

Swift breezes welcome me to my hometown
My mind is at rest, for the love felt around
Palm trees are sentries, termites their soldiers
Cherries and mangoes throw fruits, sweet as sugar
Swift breezes blow through our quiet neighbourhood
I stand under tree shades, with my hands raised
When tree leaves struggle all about breezy Ovim
To enjoy mild acquaintance: my forever home!

***

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Categories
Africa culture/tradition Nature Pastoral Poetry

February Harmattan

Harbinger of Sahara, king of the queer dust I hail you!
Your entourage of heavy sand storms and dunes
Display there works of art on our glass windows and faces
You give us very strange attires, ghostly ones

We wonder, we make guesses of why you love the dust,
Why you paint all; flowers, careless food, the pond
And why you draw make ups on our innocent faces
But when you leave, we have air void of your asunder

Our feet crack, our lips go extremely dry
No one knows your origin, even the nomads,
The camels, the horses smell you and grunt hard
When your dust meets water, it gives a pleasant smell

Where the rivers flow, you carry your dust to
So when we escape from your conquered cities
We run into the embrace of the river’s mud
Trees stand aghast, confused of what you are becoming

But alas, you come and must go,
You and your cruel crew
So where next are you going to,
And why must you paint all so?

Categories
Africa Nature Pastoral Poetry

Haiku of the Harmattan

Green things are brown
Harmattan made them so
Even trees turn mad dancers

Categories
Africa Nature Poetry

Harmattan winds

Harmattans graceful blankets slowly descend,
Blowing dry brown dust upon our hamlet,
On misty mornings and smoky evenings

Categories
Poetry

Night before Christmas

It was the night before Christmas,

Not a thing was heard or seen at first

For the cold night was at its worst

But three woodcutters walked through the forest

Marching joyfully towards home

It was cold, terribly cold that no one could make sense of it

So the woodcutters held their lamps close to their hearts to keep warm

And to avoid the many snares the treacherous Night lay

Near the forest end, where the hills and rocky caves began

They saw a family of squirrels dining on red palm nuts

Yelling and laughing softly, they sent the rodents scampering for safety

And when they came to the Mountainside, she stood still, sad,

In fact, this sadness touched the woodcutters that they forgot

The squirrels and all that had brought them joy that evening

Even the Harmattan dusts had painted the mountain white

And so she stood in the forest, like a strange and lonely phantom

Eyeing the thousands of faun and flora that lived close to her

At first she was still, but when the villain, Harmattan came again

She grew worse, from sadness to great outrage and pain

Now as the woodcutters crossed the bridge leading to the hamlet

The wolf clan came out to gather their evening meal

They circled the forests, scavenging and causing a curfew

By the forest end, where the hills and rocky caves began

They saw the lonely triangular figure staring at them sadly

‘Don’t stare at me that way, ma’am’, the wolf leader whispered

‘I am neither your lover or your hater’, he said loudly

‘Aw! This lady here is very sad’, one of the wolves said

‘Look at her face, reminds me of the queer Willy-Willy!’

‘Haha! Crazy! I wonder why she is always like that. Well not my business!’

‘Hmm, the mountain has been like this since summer time.’ said the Linnets

‘It has been a rough year for her, no love to cheer her up’ Patridges answered

In their imagination, the sad Mountain needed more love

‘How strange!’ the canopy of trees around the riverside echoed

Not minding the monkeys and apes, hundreds of them

Hanging on their branches, watching the storm and wolves make fun

And when the monkeys yelled and drummed with all their might

The wolves and the Harmattan fled with her entourage of wind and dust

Categories
Poetry

December Tides


1

Tasty for the spoils of the dry month, we are

Dry air, dry waterhole, dry lips, dry paper

Moisture lost to the heat of the traveling sun

But our feet has got many options, wait or run

And today the breeze drives the wind to us

We savor, we enjoy, to you emissary we trust

You have come with the mighty Harmattan 

Your dry airs and heat has become our tan

2

Trees sway

With blur visions on sight

As a bonus for being alive

At the point of the year

Air so dry, with hot sun rays

You only bring us dry tidings 

Cracked foot, that hurt

But we the people of this land still loves you

Commentary: 

I have written this piece with Fampah Coyish, a poet from Ghana. The both countries of ours Ghana and Nigeria fall in West Africa, and enjoy the same weather and climate. We have written about December and her tide. I have written the first stanza and Fampah Coyish has got the second. 

Categories
Uncategorized

By the Window side on the Harmattan

Once by the window side
One can see the greenfields
The tulips and the sweet smelling Rose
And the little spider crawling about in her net
The golden sun shines forth
Bringing her warmth through the window
And the birds twitter on the tree
Which live near the windowside
Sometimes squirrels come bounding in
Throwing their pack of nuts into the room

But when the dusts of Harmattan came
And the tree leaves turn brown
And the grasses grow not again
No one looked through the window…
For it all became dark and filled with soot

Categories
Uncategorized

Kpe’re in the Harmattan

Now real love feels like
Standing on a rocky land
Surrounded by bamboo trees
On a very hot sunny day
By the side of a flowing stream
Filled with children playing
In the coldness of the waters
And watching the hovering hawks
Circle the area like a scout
As each burst of Heavenly air
Shakes the leaves of the forest
Making the pines whistle
And the bamboo leaves shiver

The tiny silver fishes swerve about
Like a dancing carnival, up and down
And the brown and black crabs
Hide behind flowing tree leaves
The trees on the streams pathway
Shed their leaves joyfully
Watching as they fall quietly
Into the ever quiet stream
The squirrels on tree tops
Watch patiently for any intruder
Holding nuts picked from trees

Now the rocks, so bold and ancient
With indelible marks of Nature
And the strange folk tales told
The waters fall on the stones
And in a queer haste wash down
The rocky body of waterfall
Throwing a splattering noise
Not so far away
Like Nature washing her garments
On the waterfalls as she sing
The distorted but unified painting
Of Natures sweet wholesomeness
Wonder, green and beauty

Love for you, motherland

Commentary:
Kpe’re is the name of my hamlets stream located in Ovim in Isuikwuato in Nigeria. It is a very fine sight, full of ancient rocks and exotic forest of bamboo and many pretty flowers and plants. I can recall vividly stories told me about the stream and her forest. Wild animals; wild dogs, hyena, antelopes, boars, pythons etc have been sighted and once I witnessed a rare specie of snake being killed during a visit in one of the past Decembers. I can also recall swimming when suddenly a snake came with the streams tide, everyone had to run for safety, hahaha. I was a kid then. There is this particular rock by the bamboo forest which has the mark of a very Fish. My mom told me during one heavy down pour, that fishes came down from the clouds and one landed on the rock leaving that mark, hmmm! Well, the exotic appearance of the streamside is one of wonder, nature and beauty. Perhaps I will take pictures of here some day.

Categories
Uncategorized

Harmattan

The days are made beautiful with your glorious appearance
But when the sun rises up the clouds, the warmth is taken
And for men, faces become a caricature of disgust upon the mirror

In the morning even before the Suns rising
The firmament and the pathways is filled with mists
The track to the stream and forest is covered
The road is treacherous, for snakes sleep in your wake
The dews settle upon the leaves of trees, weighing down the branches
And all about the vegetation, smell of burning grass and wet clay stay
The greens turn red with dust
The greens frown and grow brown
When the hawks circle the skies
Searching for stray rats and chicken

The sun rises afterwards
Hot and boiling
Drying, dehydrating all
Taking the wetness off the trees
The thirst for water becomes paramount
The streams and rivulets
Quench the thirst of body and soul
Refreshing, fruits become a taste

Harmattan brings both joy and love
The evening breeze brings cool airs
A warm distraction from the heat of the day
The dry muds crack as men thread upon them
The leaves crack and fall in circles
Stripping naked proud trees and shrubs
The streams become more shallow
Children play in them, throwing water up
At one another in pure ecstacy

When the nights happen upon men
The mists return to shield the way
The moon shine lightly,
Upon the village and hamlet
The shadows of trees are hidden
In the thick fog which grows about
And when men gather in the inns
To paint the works of the day
With words come from cracked lips
And voices high pitched like the Nightingales
The airy evening bring good tidings upon them

Categories
Uncategorized

Cold Harmattan

image

If there comes a knock on the door
Don’t be in a hurry to answer
For there goes a strong wind
Rushing about the dry cloud
A very strange bust of air
Roaming the streets, the fields
Pulling leaves, and sand along
Dancing on the pathway leading to the hamlet
Painting faces with all white patches
Taking the dampness off the Earth
Drying the laundry that hung outside
Cracking the nuts under the tree
It is very awful, how fast it goes
The roads are all red brown
The shrubs and grasses loose vitality
The white colored huts are repainted
Oh but through the generosity
Of the cold blowing Harmattan
Come from the North,
Bringing tides of sand, dust
From the serene Sahara desert

Oiroegbu Halls

Categories
Uncategorized

Childhood Harmattan

I wonder why I miss the harmattan
Why it is yet to come
Why it stays in his cloak
Shy and letting the rain bully him

I miss the smell of dust cakes
And our delay to burn the grasses
So I can see the fumes dance to meet the sky
And why we ‘stays’ to harvest the Cassava
And their stems piled in a corner
I miss the catfish infested streams of Ovim
The wake up call of my rooster
And my joy in feeding them from my fingers

I miss when I feel I was hardworking
When a straying farm snake I slayed
And the thoughts that I had after that

I miss those little scary vampires
Strange mosquitoes that eat on daylights
That stays when the sun lights the earth
But are happy once the sun sets.

I miss watching those kids kick leather
in a dry dusty noon of Xmas
Laughing as they played
And I thinking I was from the past…

Note.
I vividly recall the feelings of Christmas. The preparation, the stress and the excitement that accompanied the Yuletide.

Study Question.
What are the primary figures of speech rampant here?