Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Echoes from the Ghetto

Widening ripples form beneath your feet
Thick laces of warm tears crawl down your cheeks
Gently stroking your face, painting pictures, and leaving traces of a heart that bleeds within
The gloom of the slowly dominating twilight matches your mood, as the sun hastens to flee
The wooden bridge you sit on feels your pain, and in solidarity, it creeks
As the wind moans sadly on the banks, disturbing the leaves
Hairs within your nose caress each other, bracing themselves for the mucus to tickle as it leaks
Your facial features contort repeatedly, giving you the look of a jester electrocuted by mean electric cells
Your cranium is in turmoil as your brain cells shift into overdrive, trying to remember when the guillotine fell
Intuition failed to alert, you would have summoned the faintest breath in your lungs, and let out an ear-piercing yell
To warn me what we shared was being severed at its neck
Like a crab’s shell, at a price perilous to you, you were prepared to protect me from impending wreck
But in hindsight, you now realize I was being just a crab: strolling clumsily without its head
Indifferent and thinking of everything except you, and how to make it safely to the comforting deck
Now, like an epiphany, it dawns on you, and you remember vividly
A couple of flips of the calendar in reverse, looking back
When I was at the summit of the mountain at a game park
Infested with lionesses and their starving cubs
And you needed my help in the form of a pull
I had only dusted my feet, and watched you hang on to the rope with weak, thin wool
Oh yes, and there was the time when depression tossed you her ugly dress
And you only needed to talk to me, but I covered my ears and shut my eyes to your tears
You looked up to me like a close friend does, I was your role model times three
But brazenly, with a steel-molded heart, I looked down on you as if you were nothing but a troubling flea
Now you are certain all along, to me, what we shared had been nothing but building waves, rolling forth with haste, only to break feebly at the shore
When the world fetched ear plugs and turned silent, when everyone was too busy for you and you needed me to tell you an uplifting lore
I chuckled at your plight, and said you were a waste of time; a total bore
When your intestines burned with tear-inducing hunger
I belched after eating fufu-ne-abe-nkwan+a-grand-
And to the dogs and cats, I fed the left over
I yawned, tossed in my bed and readied my self for a nice slumber
Then came the turning point: you slept too, after tossing and turning in bed with a rumbling stomach, and had a nightmare of me with a knife at your ribs
Sleep forced a window for you to escape from having your lungs punctured, and you woke up at this weak, water-soaked bridge
The boat that is patiently waiting to take you to the other town gives you a wink
It moves in the direction of subtle currents, promising you it won’t sink
You don’t want to hop into it; it stings your heart to do this
But you know you need to take this trip
You’ll cross the river now, and put some distance between you, and my head-splitting politics
You wanted a friend, but all I offered was another indifferent individual with a bag full of empty promises

Copyright © David Kwakye 2010

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