Poems by Membis Okorie Chukwukamma

Poems by Membis Okorie Chukwukamma



I am the son of wondrous gods
A proud son of my wise ancestors
I am a native warrior, I am cultured
And chosen to protect my tradition

I am resistant to this modern slavery
For as a son of water, I restore life
Harmattan is gone, rain has come
It’s time for Thunder to strike hard
So the truth would wake up all men
Who have taken their sleeping pills

What if I tell you from my noble soul
That I am the smoke of burnt shrines
And sacramentals labeled demonic
By believers who don’t respect faith:
The clear tenets of ancestral ways

What if I tell you burning churches
Reminds me of our burning shrines
Where we did honor our goddess
And offered sacrifices to our gods
Who in turn blessed our farmlands
And never cursed our rivers of fishes

Yes, I talk about our sacred alters
Where we reconnect with ancestors
Who were men and lived like men
Communally and in natures respect
Their children forcefully forced to forget
How the evil bird sings to speak of ills

The stone they threw a century ago
Is landing on their roofs with forces
They knew no peace, so brought war
Now war has returned to their shrines
They cry protesting with heavy banners

What if I tell you missing Preachers
Reminds me of missing Chief Priests
And the graves of beheaded Pastors
Reminds me of heroes who were shot
For they stood to defend our heritage

You never knew this so doesn’t matter
They didn’t teach you so why bother
When you have white gods as angels
With tithes to pay the colonial brother
Who received the baton for destruction
Of Odinani older than his generation

I do not mix sentiments with nemesis
For I do not dine on the table of enemies
Who are defiling Ani; our sacred land
And making our spirituality look bad

But I know every action has a reaction
And nature has a way of ministration
They shout triumphantly like victors
When they desecrate our spirituality
Now they cry. Nemesis on Christianity



You messed up my heart
I’ve been trying to clean it up
Conducted multiple sanitation
But it still stinks like rotten egg

You are my thoughts
You are my memories
And none of these is interesting
You make me feel like dying

My happiness is burnt
My life is a risky stunt
Wondered why you crossed my path
Maybe just to break a heart

You are an ugly experience
I want to escape your reminiscences
Hell is better than loving you
But how do I stop the dew

Whispers are sounding in my soul
I’m a train, maybe I turn off the coal
And watch the world from a spot
Until a new me sprout

You are my flaw and weakness
You are the reason for this madness
I am still trying to get cured
By the loving heart I secured.



My cloud was full of colorful bubbles
When you walked into my life
But then, you bursted them. Memories.
I’m the dinner in the dining table
Slice me with the knife or be my wife
I still remember when I said those words
Memories. I have seen the curving edge
This ship is heading to drowning
The wave has turned into a storm
And there they are, calling me home

I never learnt how to kill a butterfly
I watched her until she vanished
Who is perishing like juvenile wishes?
I am your lover and your love’s victim
Give me some respect. I am your captain
The one who loves you more than a father
But right now, I am not going any further

I have come to the roundabout of life
Maybe the point where I can’t survive
But dive to let go of the continuing strive
I lost the dream you would make a wife
Memories. Memories. Memories of you
Memories. Memories too hard to let go
For they have blended with my shadow
Speaking to my head. Resting on my elbow
Memories that were once like strawberries
Now taste like unripe plum plucked at noon

The first smile was like it would last forever
Then it stopped and became a fever
You are so favored, you know how to let go
But I’m cursed that the beautiful feelings flow
Meeting with the infected sea where I lie
Come see me, come close while I die
Then you can go higher or even fly
With memories of how it was between us
Come close but don’t cross
Else you would be loving your dead.

(c) Membis Okorie Chukwukamma

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