Thursday, November 21, 2013

The first time you hear it..



The first time you hear it, it sounds rather as if copied out of some invisible tablet in the eternal mind than as if arbitrarily composed by the poet.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

The first time you hear it
It hits home
Like new-found love
Hands holding hands, across a kaleidoscope of kilometers
Of journey of understanding
Potent, poised, passionate
Distinct like lines in the palm,
Trees bowing on Hosanna streets
Ushering in kingship, dedicated to history
In every stone-clad district

The first time you hear it
It sounds like a morning’s déjà vu
Where dew ricochets off tongues
And bathe seedlings swallowed up by sand
It sounds like "nkatikontob3" with snail entrails
Being poured on fufu pounded soft for chiefs on Akwasidae -
An island on the black concave rock of an earthenware bowl
It sounds like shea rubbed by palm on skin on a harmattan day
And tears drumming stomach within when the prodigal fowl
Finds its way home on Christmas eve
It sounds like life let loose -
A baby camel detached from the noose
Or like a quick sniff of flamboyant petal blues

The first time you hear it
You dance in rabid circles
You sit still with yourself and count seconds and thoughts
You find a  pen and write like liberty would
You drop masks and draw tasks
You make faces; emojis off emotions
You extend knuckles and heart
You pick up a phone and call your mother, your estranged dad,
The fortune teller, the president, you call that person
You tell them of the could-a-beens
In a curded boyish tone
You meditate, you motion on

..The first time you hear it

c(kw) 21/11/2013







Tuesday, October 08, 2013

BAD POETRY


Bad poetry is not like this one
Flimsy
Cliche
Drowned and insalubrious
Dumb
Distanced-
Itself from reason
Wrong
Easy

Bad poetry is not sad poetry
It's not happy poetry
It's not even abstract poetry
Bad poetry is mad poetry
Skirting-around-nothing poetry,
Exaggerated poetry
Poetry that wants to lose its life in broad daylight
And make mummies out of minds
And dummies out of our kind

Bad poetry is what good listeners do not long to love
Bad poetry is what around-the-way listeners love to cheer
So therefore don't judge poetry by today's audience's jeers
For poetry is so generalized it's queer

Bad poetry is what good readers do not bookmark
Critics crawl to, like crickets
To find its cracks and cringe
Dropping thick spittum into its crevices
That's bad poetry

We all went to the river-side
With earthenware pots on folded rags on heads
We all dipped by first swirling
On the mirror-surface of the waters
that house our ancestors' destinies
We dipped
We fetched
We carried
Then returned
To our homes beyond the dusty footpaths
And presented our fetch
We became poetry
By the waters we had
Some had water as clean as a baby's feet
Some had water muddied

Some became good poetry
Some, bad..

But they do not arrest bad poetry
When it murders and stains society
When it rolls over good poetry and mutes it
Like it's no criminal
It's sad!

(c)06102013 KW

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

THE COMPLEXION OF A GHOST (For Trayvon, may he R.I.P.)

Under the soul shed
We were each given different skins
By the master form-er

So I ask
Have we stopped dancing to King Jr's groove?
Is there a reason not to feel comfortable in our own skins
As if we have something to prove?

I see black thoughts march
With limping legs of revolution
I see black veins burst
And spill into society's tear rivers
Leaking into twin lakes

Does the colour of blood differ
Under the soul shed?
 let's ask the master form-er


Blood spilled yester-night into the eyes of pitch black night
So this morning is blind
Even the "common" cocks are mourning
They refuse to crow
So there's silence on the lawns

What's the value of a historic scorn?
Does it rise in value or devalue like currency with time?

Buried on winter froth
Harvested, in summer
A black kid tripped at the edge of sun's feet, he falls
At night
Into tears of spring

Between every gun shot and the dead body
Is a crying bullet with a sad story!

(c)KW 01102013



Wednesday, September 18, 2013

KEEP THE MUSIC

Nananom kept their music in their paws
Tutugyagu asomfour kept their hearts in their tongue
Mpanyinfuor kept their voice in their value
their value in their voice
the dead chiefs kept their modules in their music
that walks up on us
spinning on the wheels of time travel
dazzling on fine axles
castles are built from the ground up
our pillars are rooted by the hands of ancestry
a formidable culture
that still finds strains in our presence


sun up till sun down
we're fenced in the tradition
of minds pouring out food like kpokpoi at Homowo

we as poets pour libation from our tongue
overspilling the calabash of our minds
in respect
in honour
of ones who were here before us
who tilled the soil with bare feet
softened by echoes of blood drops
and solution of tear spots

we as poets have lived before
through the bones of ones who were here

we can show
by the music that sticks in our paws
the poetry that spills from our jaws



(c)KW17092013

Thursday, September 12, 2013

IDOL FACTORY

Who do you look up to?
Who exists in your third eye view
As a concrete evidence of identity?
Who is at the edge of destiny's hill
With the baton of perfection
You want to grasp?

Is it of physical essence?
Blood and bone
Flesh and Fluid
Quotes and Culture
Life of the here-now?

Is it of spiritual essence?
Deep down a touch
Invisible but a clench of trust
As brine from eyes sediment over dust
Ashy leaves lost in the wind
Wonder hugging home with a speed
Eternity or a nearly-possible eternity

The body and mind are in an x-axis
Though idols keep the balance
With the connection of a y-axis
Only reference is the
Integrity of time

Who do you look up to?
Who is your idol defined?
For he/she/it connects
With your identity and destiny.

(c)KW 12092013

In'her scope

In'her scope
where her beauty resides
he discovered
what is worn inside is an insight
without love carved deep
and a heart sculpted
with the chisel of patience,
art of endurance will not be seen


When they left the dance floor
where energy dripped
his ears became a sanctuary
for her spirited stories

She'd been through rough days
through dark corridors
like Elmina slaves
but escaped through the gates of no-return -
a probable life destruction

It took them two to tango
but they remixed their steps like azonto
they interlocked words like vocabulary lego
for a long while, then
when they left the dance floor
where laughter dripped
his ears became a sanctuary
for her spirited stories

Stories about how she used to die each day
tattooing tears on alleyways
while waltzing with music of murder
culling criminal choruses
on concrete corners
causing traffic with her static gaze
magnetism in her utterances
an effect like sublime ordinances

Now she bears ambitions
like Accra hawkers do their products
the devil snatched her heart once and twice
and used her drive as a vehicle
she returned pale
she returned a pail
fetching hearts of men she lured,
her green gaze gobbled gloom
till she was touched by him

To discard the source of sorcery
and grow a new leaf and life
one morning

The fear she had inside
lost anchor and drowned
his words
ignited a passionate flame
to refine the rusty gold
in her heart
now she shines
like the sky's magic of morning

(c)KW 10092013

Saturday, July 20, 2013

HUNGER MANAGEMENT

They advised;
"Don't play a flute on an empty tummy"

Then they went on to ask;
"who's gonna entertain us at this funeral then?
"who's gonna escort the ghost solemnly with an endearing tune?"


We lie within the heat bands
Like burnt stake on a grill
Where frequency of torture
Is measured from the pitch of teeth gnashed

Can you travel the entire distance on bare feet?
And when you find medicine for your sore limbs
Across the bridge, would you keep it a secret?
See the journey is in obscured view
The dance has extended into a trance

Passion to place
Is taken over by a mission to keep breathing
Portions in a craze -
Fates are forked between chopsticks and chinaware
Our kin take naps, what's the use of napkins?

The town-crier's voice sounds from outside the fence
We wander and wonder
Ponder like lost panthers
where carnivores are forced to eat greenery
A stitch was not received in time
So nine cats fell

When tails become stale
Rewind your mind's data tape
to the moment you bought shackles
And inscribed on them; "FREEDOM"
And tell me how the tale you've come to know

Henceforth unfolds..

Thursday, June 13, 2013

LISTEN TO VOCAL PORTRAITS ALBUM FOR FREE!

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Friday, June 07, 2013

LOVE AND OTHER SHORT THINGS

Love is an inch of dispensation
Of rose petal breath lingering in a
Brown chocolate party
Where water turns to wine
And wine turns to culture
Till event of pleasure wanes
And the dance out-spins
In a fantastic circle
Of trust
With swaying heads drunk
As time ticks with
Limits like a set clock
For batteries keep receding;
Humans are not bots
And bots are not humans.

Love is a mile of hands holding,
Trailing a track like a train
To a destination where souls lodge
Decision and indecision -
Double-park along the route
Of possible retractions
Enhanced by forcible failure
Till finality in fragments.

Love is a kiss by the wind
Where breeze is simple and clean
For a moment -
A swift dance on the tip of Eiffel
A bath in a sample of Nile
A glare into the eyes of Isis
A blur look into a beautiful bottle
Like bargaining for crocodile tears on Paga streets
Or to be squared in the heart of Bermuda
Or to circle feet in a box of Pandora,

Love is like a dip in Boti
Wishing you'd fall slowly
But quickly and gently
And mildly and strongly
And utterly beautiful with every imperfection
For the traits of men border on
                                               imperfection
So however scientific the subject of selection
We miss the question;
How long will this last?
Are we in this like entrepreneurs?
'Cause an affair is as well a risk
For when things unfold
Would you still lean on me
When my shoulder blade is sore with age?
Would I still be the apple of your eye
Even when I go blind?
Would I be the lingering thought
Engraved on the canvas of your mind?
Your grey matter- would my hair gone grey matter?

Love is as interesting as a Ga woman's Azonto
The heart's a television with different channels
The mind is a radio and frequencies frequently scan still
The face is a mirror
Could I be what you reflect on, or believe in?
A second ago he was her Romeo, but Juliet refused to let go.
She was Rose in a titanic tale, but Jack wouldn't drown.
I ask..
Is love a measure of faith like religion?
Is love leisure with taste in precision?

Love is a fool's story
But for how long would both clown?
At the end of the day
If love is food for the soul
But people forget, refuse or retire from loving
Does that not mean..
People stop living even before they die?

(c)07062013

Thursday, May 23, 2013

WHO I AM

I am the door to untold dreams
The memory of imperfect magic
Like Mozart melodies never static
I'm an actor living life's drama too
I'm that comma, that full stop,
An answer to the question never asked
A question to an answer offered a gasp
Stuck in the future
Present in your past
That shot that leaves the temple bleeding, thoughts
Only to reseal like a gambler double-dealing, spots
Receive me, I'm that miracle, far from your preacher's knuckles
I'm that boxer with a pen,
My belt stretches as far as my audience's smile girth,
Passion buckles
What was exposed behind the shroud lifted, I am
Nowhere near your regular business pastor's tabernacle, I scan
I'm sun's son
Born during moon's cheerful mood
I'm the voice in the calm
Collective conscience of unsettled legendary ghosts
With a choir of noise to charm
Graffitied skulls stuck in cave halls
Canvas of music patched in brave heart walls
I'm the significance of possibility
Optimist looking at sources of others' failure as opportunities
A farmer of acres of words
Where language is a precious crop
An exposé sore on the knee of me,
That's my curse- free thoughts
So attend to my wound
After a battle that made enemies cringe
I'm a well in the middle of Lybia
a reason for a smile like gold dust spread in the riddle of Nima



Wednesday, May 08, 2013

WHO SAID?

Who said
That stars were holes
Who said
Who said
That sun was an opening
Who said
That god peeps through
Eyes of light's soul
To behold
Creation
Who said
Who heard
That moon was a poking nose
Who said
That night and day
Were moods of a face
That bright day was of a smile
That cloudy night was of a tired frown
Who said
Who heard
That rains were silver tears
That lightning was a teeth flash
That storms were pukes
Who said
Who heard
That hurricanes were sneezes
And heat waves were steamy coughs
And earthquakes were heartbreaks
Who said
Who heard
That we were being watched?

(c)kw08052013


Sunday, April 14, 2013

LIGHT-OFF NIGHT (E.C.Jesus)

E...C...Jesus!
Kerosene lamps burning
candle tears falling
their halos tilting 
to slow wind sways
pitch-black devil eye
sky falling and 
swallowing men in its womb
time stopping
everything moving but nothing really moving
as we look like a  bunch mourning so
expect many a frowned face with
feelings mixed like roasted corn and peanuts.
The TV: a single channel of gloom,
generator engines at full blast, in the distant
rude chats, cusses at the government and 

E...C...Jesus!
Naked butts exposed
mosquitoes posed as
bloody models of a bizarre night against the
ambiance of sweat and steam.
So we do the sleeping on the corridors instead
unfolding mattresses and jeans
folding eyelids, like dreams
of seeing electricity zap in
before the sun knocks at doors
with light limbs,
under a hard-hand night shade
with moon-baked glare, 

E...C...Jesus!
The light-off night we dread
Is here!

(c)KW02042013


[Photo by @quasiadu /ff him on twitter & instagram]

Saturday, April 06, 2013

BUTTERFLY BEAUTY


i meet her at half onto eight
she sits for a half pollen plate
felt goooooood!
but hey! what's in a kiss stays in a kiss
she spreads her wings across my span
she rests like sunshine through my crown

if I had stomata they'd grow faster 
like food fulfillment does stomach archs
she takes photos of my synthesis
her colours of kaleidoscope magic
keep eyes fixed, memories elastic
like her tongue

she tells me stories
about how she has no fears
about how she flirts with the atmosphere
leaving her hair strands in the cloud's care
her knees sink into the abdomen of earth
her time ticks like drizzle in splits
her wisdom tooth bites 
into thin air

she tells me her dreams
enveloped in blue screams
she retorts about days she went deaf
when no word of the world she wanted heard
stories
of how she needs her space
and believes in her lonely pace

sometimes

she stays patient
"dzigbordzi"
that kind of patient
her beauty blooms, inbred
like yeast in bread
that's how every heart she conquers
yields
totally a natural thing
she

like a baby straddling the tired mother's back 
perches.
earth is where the hurt sits

 offer that timelessness
"abotare"
here
she perches
her stories too
etching

the breeze eavesdrops
pretending to tease
flee, hop, the sun leaves 
memories in the tree tops
and returns ah yellowish cheese,
divided into half eh night's dark lips

i meet her at half onto eight
she sits for a half pollen plate
time
halved by moon

she flies away as quick as amnesic memory
every flower she visits pollinates
you can't tell if she'll return again, ever
though these flowers for a moment 
she stirred 
so bloom..


(c)KW 06042013

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

TROTRO IN TRAFFIC STATIC


Whiffs of soot gush into nostrils
Movement and mood static
Like a ghost country with hot thrills

Sweat spreads across foreheads and hands
As if of a morning message of dew,
Tissues soak with sneeze remnants

Quick lust
At ambulances vrooming past us
And daring speedsters following fast.

As if for picture poses,
Hawkers derisively stir and stare
For market in doses

Tired ankles next to clutches project
From drivers with frowns breaking through glass,
Accelerators are left to rest..

Like our hopes to get to our destinations
“Mate, your air con no dey on?”, old man jokes
No laughter, just stern faces concentrating

Passengers half-dozing
Horns blowing disrupting the tranquil moment
Motor policeman frozen

All we see are several vehicle number plates,
Bumper stickers, red brake lights,
Behinds of heads before us: hundred shapes..

Damn! They should tow away the broken down tanker already!!



Friday, January 18, 2013

SHOUTOUT!!

@mensamusic started this SHOUTOUT trend on twitter and we couldn't help but join in the fun. Nothing too serious/personal, just #WORDPLAY>>
























IT'S A RAP!!!