Nkwachukwu Ogbuagu

January 16, 1968 - Umuahia, Nigeria
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Silence of the Rocks

Sweltering clouds above are in yoga
Below them, crags — large-hearted and
Deep-seated, with striated bowels —
Faint from the hostile shafts of sunlight.
Iguanas pray fervently through fents
Hewed by dreaded times;
So are south-oriented ivies — straggling
Idly by noon, they seek eloquence of
Humming-birds on rock-ruptured
Sequence of dalliances...
O laconic poets,
What is the length of your exile here?
Grey-haired mountains beyond
Vouch for your reticence.
Must the silence of these stones
Be filched by your elegies which
You pen at obsequies of dammed rivers?
Silence, friable on gruff winds,
Sneezes, captures the fever of
The sexton in a friendly church
Whose choir sings in mottled silence.
Rocks are stones, potent elements,
Segmented, hollowed, hallowed,
Silenced by the mirth of feculent waters
Laughing underneath anodyne walls.
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