Red Ink

Short poety, works move, out and about Africa

 

I.

In East Germany we used to be sent to work in Siberia.

Mail would be read by censors, so he told his friends
Lets establish a code.

If the letter received is written in blue ink,
It is true what I say.

If in red,
It is false.

A month later his friends got the letter.

It says, this letter: Everything is wonderful here,
Stores are full of good food,

Movie theaters show good films from the west,
Apartments are large and luxurious but,

The only thing you can not buy is,
Ink.

This is how we live.

We have all the freedoms we want,
But what we are missing Red Ink.

 

II.

So then I was moved.

The pink and yellow bundle in his mothers arms,
Cut three desolate figures,

-sillouttes-

Against the snow and barren landscape,
Son and wife and,

Finally mother,
United in Korea,

Frost in every breath,
A tight escape,

Warm soup around the table because,
Only mother knows the pain of birth;

The raft did not fail this time.

Mother will be happy to learn the new ways,
Of feeding children soup.

 

♦photo♦ yeyeolade.wordpress.com

evocative short poetry

On dodging bullets

Unbreakable © Touchstone Pictures

Unbreakable © Touchstone Pictures

 

A glance at the rear-view mirror,
And you’re in the hands of a driver,

Who’s chewing grass,
And kneading her weave.

You hope you’ve selected the right seat because,
You’re left of a drunk,

Who’s just exclaimed,

-in between snorts-

That women are pricks,
And we’re moving too fast.

In slow motion,
Survival is glamorous.

You imagine, you see, that you can dodge bullets,
And retain bouncy hair,

-that keratin replenishers really do work-

But the drunk man was right,
Not about women.

Too fast is too fast.

You survived,
The others did not.

You’re hope is valid.

♦photo♦ thedissolve.com

evocative short poetry

 

Mullholand Drive

image

I squashed a cockroach the other day,
A big, Fat, Cockroach.

It was trying to get away and I squashed it.

Not that I had anything against that, Particular cockroach,
I was bare-foot,

Had tea, And biscuits,
And was bare-foot when he made his dash across the corridor.

It took some time to calm down and,
Fetch another tray.

When I returned,
The cockroach had vanished.

A thick, white streak,
Of substantial viscosity,

Ran right across the floor and straight under my door.

“Her gartered leg was up on the table.

She removed a delicate silver pistol and,
With his back turned,

Fired a single shot.”

I used a shoe this time like a maniac then,
Framed by a single,

Swinging light-bulb,
Waited for the detective.

Serial killer

image

I squashed a
cockroach the other day.

A big, Fat, Cockroach.

It was trying to get away and I squashed it.

Not that I had anything against that, Particular cockroach but, I was bare-foot.

I had tea, And biscuits, And was bare-foot when he made his dash across the corridor.

It took some time to calm down and, Fetch another tray.

When I returned, The cockroach had moved.

A thick, white streak, Of substantial viscosity, Ran right across the floor and, Straight under my door.

Her gartered leg was up on the table.

She removed a delicate silver pistol and, With his back turned, Fired a single shot.

I used a shoe this time, Like a maniac,

And then, Framed by a single, Swinging light-bulb, Waited for the detective.

Insurrection

image

I have always liked,
Defiant Africans,

Nelson, Patrice, Kenyatta,
Martin Luther King,

Groovy black men,
Niggers with attitude,

But they intimidate me,
Black men.

Freedom fighters,
Bar room brawlers,

And I rise from sleep,
Sheened in sweat,

Running away,
Scribbling my number,
On scraps of paper,

On foreheads and trousers,
On outstretched palms,

And I’m breathing heavily,
Feeling stained,

Because,
That one there,

The white man in Navy uniform,
With hair on his balls,

I know him,

-conquistador-

He smells of garlic and grease,
And my black friends call me,
Nigger, whore, bitch.

Will he take the lion tooth offered,
Can he make the tribal dance?

-I can teach him to love the earth,
Teach him to plant his feet in, deep-

I masturbate from sleep, supported
By thick, colonial, muscle.

I am forging steel,
Industrial iron,

I am engineering a white lover
Beneath the sheets, whilst

Apologising to freedom fighters,
Who call me nigger, whore, bitch.

 

♦photo – personal

evocative short poetry – words move