Femi Osofisan


Exile song


Echo of sparrow and seagull:

drone of departing beings:

         It is the same siren cry,

         the exile’s song


bless us, motherland,

we the orphans left behind…


we have waited in the dust of depleted libraries

looked at the lean look of the classrooms

where young forlorn eyes stare back like waiting stakes


we have read our future fate in the gaunt bands

gathering noisily over the garbage dumps


Hearts are breaking

& loves dry out

the wind is strong

& a new season has come

hostile to sedentary breeds


Come, says the road

the air is impatient:

           it is the same summoning cry,

           the exile’s song


Seeking consolation still, I think of my friends

who have all escaped elsewhere

& of the letters they send back monthly in exultation:


Alone, I

take a long walk into the spaces they left behind…



Become the journey


So wait

no longer

for the coming

of the ferry:



the promise

of the



Turn, beloved.




the journey itself!



The poems by Femi Osofisan featured here are taken from Dream Seeker on a Divine Chain (Ibadan: Kraft Books, 1993).



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Sentinel Poetry (Online) #46

The International Journal of Poetry & Graphics...since 2002                  

ISSN 1479-425X

Editor: Amatoritsero Ede

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