New African Writers
Bode Osanyin

Memory Speaks

Echoes from the past
Thunder from the tongue less cavern of the earth
To rouse my anesthetized sail from slumber,
Sutured wounds crack open, oozing fresh flood
As the pain of yesterday visit suddenly
-drawing rivulets from sunken eyes.
Blind eyes see shattered dreams in a shroud
Encircled by living dreams.
The bullet pierces my heart again and again
On its journey to vex my grieved soul.
My ravaged heart leaks out multitudinous emotions
Into a putrid flood.
He wanted to live and earn a living,
He wanted to earn a living and live;
But death riding on the shoulders of brigand said No!
Daily this bitter demise of blood
Lives on in my mind.


Copyright 2006


I was there


When His son stood by Him at creation

Silent in the womb of nature

Watching the Art of all Art

When, he spoke to the Angels and his son

And imagined creation

I was there

Mouth sealed, helplessly waiting for His orders

When He stretched the firmament,

And commanded, light from darkness

When the made the Earth called the Firmament Heaven,

I was there, far from The earth,

Yet He saw me there

When he made these seas from the gathering

Of water,

And created whales and

Fowls of all sorts

I waited patiently for his word

He formed Adam form the soil,

The same soil that mocks our pride

I was there, in the beginning

Waiting for my time.



Vials of sacred births
By choice less compulsion
Shattered at earth darkest harbor,
The male and female cargo ejected at nature’s will.
Nine branches abide in one face of a lonesome vine
Some are scorched as if passed through nature’s kiln
Others are wrenched as saplings, their nodes blood-dried
Yet others seek nutrients for witting leaves,
Flourishing branches excised by unseen hands
Breathe the air of foreign climes as
Gnarled hands of malice and envy
Tattoo native branches with ugly incision
Bleeding sap from gaunt members
Now cracked, hacked and sallow.

Copyright 2006



Flames and Fire from Africa, Poems
Macauley Oluseyi Akinbami


About the Book


This is a collection of poetry by African poet Macaulay Oluseyi Akinbami who gives voice to the inspiration, pathos, love and anger – a complex brew of feelings - of his Continent emerging into the 21st Century.  While the poems were written to be performed on the streets of Lagos with the rhythms of this sprawling great African city in the background the vision is cosmic and global.   There are suggestions of Blake but also of the profound Christianity inherited by the author from his pastor father syncretized with the ancient beliefs of his country of Nigeria.  This poetry is a collection of radical philosophical musings on the place of mankind in the Cosmos, presenting itself in the form of love morals, death, life, mysticism and pain.  The poetry also addresses the norms of the society using the popular poetic device known as “hide and say.â€�

As revolution adapts radicalism, the subjects in this book are apt, practical and romantic while inspired by the concrete experience of the poet they relate to the vital issues of the day and universal values from the multifaceted prism of Africa.


About the Author


Macaulay Oluseyi Akinbami is a philosopher, social critic, poet and dramatist born in 1973 to the late pastor V. O. Akinbami of Nigeria’s Ondo state which is notable for its aquatic and petroleum resources.  He was educated at the University of Lagos Akoka with a BA in European Language.  He also studied French at the Alliance Francaise Ikoyi Lagos.  Akinbami was greatly influenced by non-conformist Romantic writers like William Blake and Samuel Taylor Coleridge (particularly “Kubla Khanâ€�).  He was also influenced by David Diop and other African writers.  He addresses a large audience to enlighten people on the need for revolutionary change in his home country of Nigeria.  Some of his work has been featured in “Thisdayâ€�, a National newspaper in Nigeria and in the “English Journalâ€� of the Department of English of the University of Lagos.


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Deus ex Machina

Promises of pardoned traitors
Reek like ancient regrets.
Steeped in rapacity.
Inured to light, they
Dominate blindly
Evoking the same air of oppression
Noteworthy of the days of yore.
Traitors in transit, trampling as they go.
Over us, they bellow.
Lording it, they rule
Under the guise of foreign dogmas,
Silence all demanding.
Egocentric beasts with rotund bellies
Gloat with our reserves.
Unaffected by the groaning of a people
Nestled in penury.
Our Overseers,
Behemoths, disguised,
Assiduously make us the
Shame of the whole world while
At  perfect ease with themselves.
Neglecting the many sufferers about, they
Jostle for private vaults in Zurich as
Our poverty became their riches.
And the bespectacled gargoyle
Trenched in the prison called Rock.
Impervious to all wisdom,
Kept an unholy vigil as
Undertakers beckoned suddenly.

Archetypical simpletons, they
Bask in gaudy wealth
Untouched by the miseries surrounding them
Building high walls to keep prying eyes away.
Atop Hills, perched like Vultures,
Kleptocrats searching for new honour.
Aglow in oily garbs, they
Regale themselves, as the world looks on in amazement!

The Tree

I choose to see the trees
When nothing on earth gives joy
I choose to hear the songs of the birds
In the cool hours when the dew spreads
Its wings, to wet my world
Let the leaves dance with the wind as
I watch the dance of nature
In this lonely world where friend are few
And foes are many
In the trees I found a friend
Though you chide my choice
Yet it is the best in this vain
The green of the leaves, the colours of the flowers
The dance in the wind
The endurance in the odds
Sometimes rainy in my choice
And sunny to my hurt
In the bright day standing still
And in darkness never fret
And when wearied by time
The beauty remains in my heart unfading.


What need are tears
When the very depth of our misery
Time fills?
The heart is a traitor
When it bares the deep secrets within.
Tears, are they all for pain?
And when the tears are long dried,
The pains are too soon gone?
They make rivulets with their tears
Cacophonies with their hearts.
Sympathy and Pain, feigned.
Others, with their hearts cry
The ocean of their pain unseen.
How best then can we shed our tears
For those whose eyes are dried so hard?
As stones never once broken,
As though no tears ever passed through their eyes.
A woman’s tears
Melt even the hardest hearts.
The purpose obscured.
I wonder
Where the tears of a child comes from?
Certainly from the heart!
Baring the purity of its purpose.
If for once I need must cry,
Let me like a baby wail.


US - Africa Literary Foundation

Chimdi Maduagwu, PhD
Executive Director
US-Africa Writers Foundation
Dr. Bode Osanyin
Chairman, Department of Creative Arts
University of Lagos
Department of Creative Arts
Akoka, Yaba
Lagos, Nigeria

Website Copyright © 2002-5 US-Africa Writers Foundation.  Selected writings copyright by their authors