Celeste

White crystalline moon at midnight
Stars alive, soft yellow cloud passes by
I gather my anxieties at a west window
Whisper weak wishes to the casual wind
The cold night air caressing my soggy face
Remembering the gorgeous days we left
Back in the dear past where moments last
I hear sounds from a nearby distance
Rising from the far away purple old wood
A million sad voices crying out her name
The bitter truth is let loose and the song withers
I’m drawn back inside to tend the crackling fire
I’m all alone again waiting for the future
Trying to console the restless flames within
My thoughts try to hide but are surrounded by Celeste
She broke free today and went away
Pain had led her astray and hope lied to us again
Now she’s resting in the brilliant fields
Dazzling meadows beneath the shining rain
Swimming in shallow grasses and timeless light
Bet she doesn’t even know she’s dead

 

Advertisements

Stay

In the soft dawn light
wounds were exposed
and secrets were told.
A familiar song’s heard down the hall
churning out a cold goodbye.
Broken bright tunes dance from the room.
They shine on your grave, growing dimmer.
She strolls out with her head held low
carrying the broken promises
stolen from the desperate and alone.
The air is heavy and cruel.
You speak your case
hold your breath
and beg her to stay.
But you know it’s fruitless
like wishing for life before time.
She floats up and takes to the sky.
Leaving you breathing goodbye.
The mean beautiful creature
leaves your heart lying in space,
crawling on the stars
trying to find its way back home.
Will she be away for long?
Only time will tell.
Let’s hope it speaks the truth.

Alive

Time passes by his window.
It stops for a second to hide
from his eyes. The facts
are told to his peers and those
strange liars who in harmony
crumble at his feet.
Golden voices speak words
held about by best intentions.
It briefs him and runs out,
but he doesn’t believe.
He rides past green judging eyes
with a future in his hands.
Past indiscretions forgiven
but due to present circumstance
the only hope of this man is life.
Anyone around will thrive
when she receives the cue.
The tree of truth will bear fruit
that once eaten
can not be denied.

Who could misplace such an idea?
Who would ask the truth to lie?
We hide from it.
It finds us.
We throw it away.
It returns.
We can’t disavow it.
We are alive.

Uninvited

Cold day unlike another
Nearby desistances give birth
their children sent out
to visit without invitation
Black shroud, foreign form
misguided purpose
Fated without deliverance
Takes us to their lodge
endless dingy hole in the ground
We meet the resident
definite mistress telling past lies
Playing games with time
Grave politics won and lost at will
We’re all welcome
it’s insisted that we stay
Exploring the distance
Ghost bodies float
past strong graves
Our beds are made
No path to escape
Who will save us?

Unsaid

Joseph Kandeni is lying on his bed, resting his head on a pillow. He’s not asleep, he’s not trying to fall asleep. He’s thinking about his young life as the red evening sun throws narrow rays through the only window of his small hostel room. He’s feeling off balance. His life is spiraling and he’s trying to put it together in his head.

Joseph has just received a call from his father, it was not good news. He’s looking up at the white water-damaged ceiling with the phone still clutched in his right hand. The 21 year old second-year medical student is trying to figure out what to do next. Everything was fine just a few hours before, but then slowly began to unravel that afternoon.

The phone conversation with his father had been short, too short. His father had hung-up before Joseph could tell him his own news. Fill him in on events that occurred just an hour before in the dean of medicine’s office. Events that had put him on the first spiral he was in before his father called him. He was dreading to tell his parents about it but now they would have other things on their minds.

Alone in the room, he thinks as he listens to the wind rustling through the leaves of the trees outside his window and the shuffling footsteps from outside his door of other students returning to their rooms after evening classes. The silence of his own room is broken by the ringing of his phone. It’s a text; from an unexpected source. He opens the message and reads it.

Hi, been a while, umepotea wapi?

He looks at it and smiles. The message is from Sera Makawa, a friend he hadn’t seen for a while because he had been busy with his mid-terms. Sera was a tall and thin second-year art student he met through a mutual friend a year ago. He thinks for a bit then he types.

Mimi niko tu, kuja unitafute 🙂

SEND

He waits for the reply which he is sure will come, she always replied to texts immediately. He liked that about her, he liked her from the moment they met. She wasn’t like his female medical-student classmates. Although not very book-smart, she was very artsy and smart about life. The exact opposite of himself.

After a minute, his phone rings as expected, a new message. He reads.

Sawa 🙂 we should meet up, movie?

They had the same taste many things and especially movies. The two of them would go out, but only as friends, whenever something good came out. He thinks about the last time they saw each other, one month back, as he types.

Ok, I’ll call you when I’m free.

SEND

He waits as he now watches the single pale-blue curtain on his window dancing to the breeze. Again he doesn’t have to wait for long, he feels the slight vibration of the phone in his hand before hearing the familiar message tone. He reads.

Cool, looking forward to it. How is everything else, classes and such?

The words of the message take him back into his mind-spiral. Incredibly he had managed to put away his troubles from his mind. He stares at his phone, thinking about the question for a full minute before typing.

Things are awful, my parents are separating and I might get kicked out of school.

Joseph looks at the message he has just typed. Such earnest, the most he has ever put in a single text. He feels uncomfortable. He hadn’t know Sera for long, only a year. During the times they had spent together, they always kept their conversations on casual topics and had never gone much deeper. He feels like this is a mistake.

DELETE

He also doesn’t want her feeling sorry for him. He pictures her in his head; pretty round face with piercing brown eyes and her smile that always managed to lighten him up. He feels himself longing to see that face again, those eyes. He begins to type again.

I’ve missed you since the last time, been thinking about you a lot.

Joseph surprises himself. He didn’t know just how much he missed her till that moment. Till he saw those words on his phone which he typed almost on auto-pilot. He panics.

DELETE

He had something special with Mary and he didn’t want to ruin it. Besides, he couldn’t face the rejection, not this day. But then, he feels something stirring inside him. An emotion that makes his heart beat faster and an intensity well-up from the pit of his stomach all the way up to the back of his throat making him want to shout. He thinks, “what the hell, what’s the worst that could happen?” He types.

I think I’m in love with you.

He looks at the words. He pictures her reading them, not quite able to make out her face. Is she smiling? Is she frowning? He can’t tell. Fear grips him again. He feels her drifting away. What if she doesn’t feel the same?

DELETE

What was he thinking? That would have been a disaster; he would have lost her for good if he had sent that text. He lies there still, breathing fast. He waits until his breathing slows down and his heart stops racing. He types.

I’m fine.

SEND

One of a Kind

What if there was only one of a kind?
One world which we all live in.
One goal for all to achieve.
One idea that can’t be denied.
One solution that’s out of reach.
One moment to spend all of time.
One purpose which can’t be found.
One feeling trapped inside.
One sin to live and choose.
One forever never getting here.
One thought trapped in time.
What if this was the only poem
and you had one chance to read it.
One memory you’ll have to keep in
one mind filled with a single rhyme.

What if you had only one pen?
Would you hold it longer when you write?
What if there could only be one sunrise?
Would you stay up and wait for it?
What if you could only have one meal?
Would you savour every bite?
What if you could only speak one word?
Would you save it for your one breath?
What if you could only love once?
Would you wait to find the right one?

What if you had only one life?

Don’t Go There

Don’t go there
Draws you in when at your lowest
Drives you mad with regret
Fills your soul with torment
Shattering the quiet innocent

Don’t go there
The hollow place inside you
Past shattered dreams and scared hope
Shallow and idle breeding anguish
Pain’s gravity pulling you inside

Don’t go there
The land is soggy beneath your feet
Sweet apathy poison oozes from the ground
It drains you of your hope like a sponge
Saps you of your strength and courage

Don’t go there
The air is foggy and you can’t see past your pain
Every breath you take makes you weaker
Blind and broken you stumble through
The plain plane with tired unwilling legs

Don’t go there
It stinks of wasted promises and broken dreams
Scent of costly hope and rare despair
It only exists to keep you from your purpose
Bleed you of your joy and weigh you down

Don’t go there
You’ll be better off If you stayed away
From the mind waste filled nothing
Turn back and run
Run as fast as you can
If you want to see the sun

 

Cold June

It was Friday. The five day slog was done and the two days of precious leisure lay before me. The sun had just gone down and though I had never been in the habit of hitting the town, I found myself at a club with a drink in my hand. I don’t know why, something had drawn me there.

The establishment was just like any other in the city, gloomy, crowded and playing loud music. As usual the terrible music, with its thumping bass assaulting my ears, was getting to me. I thought about leaving and finding a quieter place but I was tired and decided against it.

I looked around the club from the bar where I was sitting and saw it had a balcony which seemed quieter and was much less crowded. I paid for my drink, grabbed my glass and shuffled through the throng as I made my way to a bit of solitude. As I made my way past the revelers I heard behind me a soft shout.

“Hey you!” It was loud but gentle. I continued walking because I didn’t believe it was I being summoned, not by that voice.

“Hey Barcelona!” the voice called again.

I stopped; this time sure I was the target of the summon because I was wearing, under my jacket, the jersey of that particular football team. I turned around slowly searching the dimness of the club but could not immediately find the source of the voice.

Then I saw her, a short-haired, light-skinned goddess in a red dress sitting alone at a booth. She was raising a wine glass to me. I raised my glass in response. She wasn’t familiar to me. I raced through my memory trying to remember if I had met her before but nothing came to mind.

I walked over to her booth slowly, my mind still racing. By the time I got to her table nothing had come to mind.

“Hello,” I said. It was more of a question than a greeting. It sounded like a whisper over the club din.

“Sit with me,” she whispered in return.

I hesitated. Usually I was cautious with the beautiful ones, they being only conscious of their own feelings. It was a lesson I had learned the hard way; but tonight I had a tingle of self-destructiveness in me so I thought why not and went to sit opposite her in the booth.

“No, not there. Here, next to me,” she said.

I was surprised. I had to know her from somewhere, she wouldn’t be so familiar otherwise. I sat down where I had intended, not heeding her plea.

“Have we met? Do I know you?” I asked meekly.

She didn’t answer, she just smiled – a mocking smile – and sipped her wine.

I had to know her from somewhere; I searched my mind, but nothing. She was beautiful, too beautiful to forget. She was trouble and I could tell. I contemplated getting up and walking away but the self-destructiveness kept my ass rooted on the black leather.

“Tell me your name,” I said, much firmer.

Still she said nothing. She just looked at me and kept that mocking smile on her face. I thought for a second. Picked up my drink, got up and went and sat beside her.

After a few seconds I heard the soft voice say.

“April.”

“Well April,” I said looking at her, “could you tell me why you called me over here.”

“You looked interesting.” She said this without turning her head and looking at me. She was staring into the club, at the people there.

“What about me was interesting?” I asked.

“For one, you are the only one here apart from me who really doesn’t want to be here.” Still not turning her head towards me.

“You mean you are not enjoying the music this fine establishment has chosen to assail our ears with?” I asked sneeringly.

I saw the end of her lip curled up. It was a smile and not a mocking one at that.

“If you would rather be elsewhere, why aren’t you there instead?” I continued.

“I don’t know where I want to be, I just know that it’s not here.”

“So I’m to distract you until you decide where that is?” I said almost angrily.

“Yes,” she said, still not looking at me.

“Why would you do such a thing?” I said feigning hurt, “I should be offended.”

“Yes you should be, and yet here you sit.” She turned her head and looked at me for a second as she said this then turned back. I figured out she was staring at the club’s entrance.

“This is more interesting than sitting alone I guess,” I said.

“Why are you even here then?”

“I’m drowning my sorrows.”

“How’s that going?”

“Sorrows can breathe under water, even under vodka. Only time can muffle it.” I said looking at my glass. When I turned back towards her, she was staring at me, a puzzled look on her face.

“But you still drink?” she asked.

“I’m already a bit drunk, I can’t stop now,” I replied as I swallowed what was left in my glass and called a waiter over.

“Get me another screwdriver please and another of what the lady is having.”

“No thanks,” she cut in, “this will be adequate.”

We talked like this for a while. She was fascinating, definitely couldn’t be categorized. After a brief lull in the conversation she continued her strange antics by leaning in on me and putting her head on my shoulder.

“Have you ever made a mistake?” she asked softly. She didn’t have to shout her mouth so close to my ear.

“No.” I answered.

“Never?”

“Not once.”

“Are we sure? Are we not making things up?”

“We didn’t think the lady was being serious,” I replied, “everyone makes mistakes, it is our nature. What was yours?”

“I fell in love with a bastard and now I can’t leave him. I can’t do it by myself. I’ve tried but I keep going back. I need someone to save me. Can you save me Barcelona?”

“Why can’t you save yourself?”

“The gentleman is supposed to save the damsel.”

“You don’t seem to be in any distress, and I’ve never claimed to be a gentleman.”

“Why are you being mean?”

“Mean? Me? I wouldn’t dream of it.”

“You better answer me quick.”

“Why?”

“Because the bastard is heading this way.”

I looked up and saw a tall, handsome man heading towards us.

“Who are you?” he glared at me, then at her. “June, who is this guy?”

She hadn’t even told me her real name, I felt vindicated for my previous doubts. I kept silent and didn’t say anything. The tall handsome man sized us up and said.

“Come on June, let’s go.”

“Well Barcelona, what’s it going to be?” she said looking at me.

I wanted to punish her, the self-destructiveness was working overdrive. I remained silent. The scene was interrupted by the waiter with my order. It was now her turn to stare at me as I sipped on my drink and said nothing.

She slid out of the booth and started walking out, the tall man following behind her. When she got to the door she paused and looked behind her, at me, for a second. Her face caught the light perfectly and I immediately regretted my decision.