Life In Abakpa* by Ugwu Erochukwu Shedrach

& this a haven
where a boy swims to find a name
in the dead river of the street.
here; everyone creeps to himself
like a snail on a rainy afternoon.

everyman lives at the verge
of his burning throat.

their voices are hidden,
a child becomes a man
and a man becomes a child.
the paradox of running
away from home.

here; obituary posters compete
on unplastered walls,
a boy swallows fire and
cools the flame in his belly,

a blind man carrases a keyboard keys,
the sings hallelujah with his heads up,
a man wants to wear
the shoes of his dead neighbour,
a girl yet blinks her eyes
like the night stars with swollen belly.

Abakpa,
this is how they spell life; "on your own,"
sings a voice from a bachered* room
with termite striken rafters.


*a ghetto in south eastern part of Nigeria
*a building made with only woods and zinc

Shedrach is a free verse and haiku poet who has been published in known journals. He is a student of ESUT, studying soil science.