FEATURE ARTICLE

Augustine C. OhanweFriday, June 27, 2014
chyinaho@yahoo.com


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A PALACE IN THE DARK (POEM)

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nd its dark, inky dark.
Behind the pedestal,
a bodiless eye stands silhouetted staring,
while two tendrils of peas sprout
from a putrefying open sewer
and jutting from their twisted stems.

Their tiny buds emit pungent smell
and the obnoxious miasma chills the soul,
hallucinates the mind
and intoxicates the brain,
causing it to see with unbelievable vividness,
things which do not exist.

The force of its ripple withers the rose,
dries the distant brook, generates commotion
and paralyses the wings of the dove
as if the hyena will have its field day.
My heart is bereft of words
as uncanny variables blend into amorphous assemblage
shaking the pillars of the palace.

Why should a beautiful palace render itself
to such a despicable design?
And in this macabre atmosphere,
a weeping lady stands,
buries her face, bathed in sweat
in her cupped palms,

as she listens to the rhythm of her palpitating heart
induced by fear of tomorrow unknown,
while an army of low dark cloud
creates a rueful heavy pall over the palace
forcing the rootless and the impoverished
to clasp on straw an awful climax!

The tiny, exit hole from the fatal slope
upon which the palace is launched
remains dire and dark with no sign of a radiant dawn.
And with hated breath, she courses the day she was born
and makes the invocation of death his hourly ritual
even though the interior architectures of his bodily edifice have died.

And in this palace
people do actually become ugly in prison,
including the jail chaplains,
who preach salvation to those who have no hope,
and when they listen, the message gets into the ear
and out from the other without registering impression on the brain

Yes, the quake, the storm, the flood
and penury are all in the palace
This scene, one must pity and cure
but not by throwing oneself into the water
from the boat
in order to escape sea-sickness.

June 27, 2014

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