SENTINEL POETRY MAGAZINE  APRIL 2003

CHIMALUM NWANKWO
Guest Poet

About Chimalum Nwankwo

Burning Bush

Waiting

Iroko In The Wind

Flower from the Tomb

Tales Of Their Passing

Cover Page

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Christopher! Warrior poet !
Dike ji ofo jide ogu ! Like the ancestors

You read the goddess book of war and blood
That war and blood are the blights of flowers

That poison could be the wine of honor
The holy water of the garden of sweets

When jackals stomp into the sacred groves
To begin a parade of wild animals

Christopher! It is now a parade of wild animals
It is a season of wailing souls, ugulu di egwu !

Terror mounts sentry at the gates of sleep
It is a season of wailing souls, echi di ime !

These days are nightmares of iron hoofs
With nights of flint and red coals of pain

It is a deep night of wailing souls, abani di egwu !
A season of the terror of knotted things

How all bear the sermons of jackals
Of mongrels glowerng over starving babies

It is a season of beastly inaugurals
Of red fangs and growls and howls of blood

A yellow fox sits on a trumped gold throne
Surrounded by hyenas in scarlet cassocks

It is a carnival of stolen red caps
And of eagle feathers mixed with chicken feathers

Of beaded crowns from ancient nightmares
Of clowns pulsing with poisoned daggers

Resplendent rogue angels in gold on white
Scornful of detection scornful of law

Because the air is ruled by a king of thieves
In brazen majesty from barns to groves

It is a carnival of such giddy heights
A risen Jadum will cry for another death

Such saccharine chants such cheap magic
Lace the air with soporific pain

With mass agony in sweet refinement
With murderers and swindlers clinking glasses

Chalices chalices in a smell of blood
With peoples pain elixir! Elixir !

Christopher ! Warrior poet!
I tell you again. It is a parade of wild animals

Our world is now a pitiful weakling
It groans with the burden of an elephant corpse!

Burning Bush Continues >>