The idea of my blackness only sunk in when I landed at the Dallas International Airport. The summer humidity was first to welcome me. It was unbelievable, stepping out from the air conditioned lobby into the bare intense heat. It felt like the melting heat was tugging at my skin, reminding, sucking away any trace of bodily fluid. This was different from the northern sun of Kaduna I was used to. This was the in your face type of sin in a way mirroring much of the attitude I was to receive later on.
During the times that have come by, I pray for war to come. Not these new modern warfare. The old kind. Those ones stationed between battle noise and mud trenches. The zipping sounds of mortars, as empty bullet shells illuminate the blood heavy war terrain. Soldier boots marching through old places that were once called new homes.
Yes, I pray night and day. Night and day! Yes, for at night sleep refuses me and tosses me in between my past memories and a future I remain nameless.
These drones are empty vessels. They are transporters of bad news and death. For our souls do hunger for a reason to accept sleep, but no! Not these ones. These silent birds made with fiber like materials only look down, fall flat, and never return up.
Like thin dots silently scattered.
Only if your hands be wide as the oceans floors and you bring them together then one might see how much these dots have cost us.
I grow sick by the hour. Every hour eaten in silence. Every chance taken just to remain still. I grow deeper into my own anger. Madness beckons daringly close ….and I fear I will welcome it back home.
Commander Bull. ENTRY #204881
Battlefront Shagari Sector, Year 2098
Distances attained, now wasted, thrown away into the bin
Two stars both failing to fully converge
It shatters apart; the life-time present,
It runs away from their grasp
So up high, these two go back to their starting points
Two stars, two souls meant to be one
But apart they remain, stretched far across the galaxy
Each alone, with a memory of what it would have been
Memories are the only dreams they have left
Two stars, two souls apart, divided by the night of space
Apart they burn, without love, they are lost
Both burning fast, both hastening the fall that is to come
So with much haste they shine
The fire that burnt must burn to cut ropes that keep these two stars apart
Burn it does, past the days of when these two could only dream
It must burn well until life itself had been replenished,
Then will the fire cease and lovers reunite
And if by chance, on that night, your gaze rests on the sky
Look closely and watch as these two stars both come falling down to earth
Back to life, they crash
Spiraling their souls take form, reuniting
Combusting into love flames, shedding away heavenly skins
If you put ears to the sky during when these two stars fall onto soil
You’ll hear the cries from their souls, born afresh
Two souls brought back into life, two stars shinning bright on earth
The man in the red suit carefully placed down his pen and crushed his almost finished cigarette on the nearest ashtray. The habit of light-inhale-puff-crush started back in his early twenties. Back then he wanted to be a cool writer; in short he wanted to be the next Stephen king; mysterious and weird, only much cooler. So for a while he lived his life without a care in the world. Smoking and drinking regularly were some of the habits he referred to as cool. He often called himself a bastard, one who had no one and did not care about anything except of course his writing gifts. Yes, at that young age he felt his ability to put his unique thoughts on paper was a gift from up high. It wasn’t until later in life when things became clearer that he decided that writing was not a gift but a reflective curse. For years during his mid-twenties, he felt he was a mess; society’s outcast, and the only reason he thought so was because as a writer he had to bring so much onto the table. From his troubles to the worlds various issues, he just but could not stop writing about these things. Those were the days when ancient riddles always troubled his young and fresh mind. The man in the red suit ordered for another drink, “The bartender by now would be thinking of me as just another old loser by the bar,” he thought. “Spot on,” He confirmed to himself.
His old age could not hide his many troubles, troubles that had being carried over from his young mind into his old feeble bones.
“No wonder they say writers are the world’s oldest historians,” the man in red said not caring if anyone heard him. “The same words we struggle to paint always ends up stabbing us right on our hearts.”
“What did you say sir?” the bartender asked.
“You know I could’ve been a bartender, maybe life would have been different,” The man in red said looking right into the bartender’s eyes.
“You can never tell sir,” the bartender injected. “I enjoy what I do, but I don’t necessarily like it; it’s a blessing and curse at the same.”
The man in the red suit smiled upon hearing those words, and wearing a large grin he replied; “A curse you say, well you talk some sense, but here are some words from a much older fool to younger one, listen, too much sense in this insensible world might be what takes you early to your grave.”
“And what makes you think I’m afraid of dying?” asked the bartender.
“How should I know, all I know is some go earlier than others, it doesn’t matter if you’re afraid or not, just start saving some money for your family, and before I forget I need my drink please.”
And without a word, the bartender turned his back and brought him his drink. The man in the red picked up his drink, gulped some and lit himself a new fresh cigarette. With his lit-inhale process ongoing, the man in red once again took his pen and wrote on a crumbled paper:
“Like the book of vain
We all wait for the end
A strike too many
A fall too lengthy”
A magnificent looking red gazelle met a black bad wolf
“I want to be your friend,” says the red gazelle.
The black bad wolf grins and replies, “cometh winter I shall lick your bones cold dry.”
Instincts betrays no one
Shadows of the accuser
“I’m telling you men, it’s the new generation kids”
Wearing a faded brown and white 80’s vintage sweater, Lucio’s eyes widen with fiery intensity as he further elaborated on the idea contemporary friendship.
“I have a friend who when he was 17 years old went to jail for 22 years, when he came out, I was the first person he called.” Silence and a sigh, as Lucio momentarily relieved his past memory.
“You know what he told me?” Lucio asked me.
Obviously I needed not answer, so with my lips firmly shut, I patiently waited for him to continue his story.
“He told me that I’ve been like a brother to him ever since he entered his cell block.”
I could tell Lucio was fighting back incoming emotions by using every trick exclusively known to man.
“You see you younger kids don’t have that anymore.” Again he stopped, to which he briefly looked around to see if anyone was within his space or depth.
“All you kids think about is backstabbing each other; back and forth, on and on.”
Brief Intermission, intermission interrupted
“Remember that guy you saw me talking to earlier,” Lucio continued. “We’ve known each other since we were eight years old, and we haven’t seen each other for like two years, i think, but just like that we just caught up and it’s all love, no anno..whats that word…yeah.animosity between us two.”
And like the Soprano’s pitch black finale, Lucio unexpectedly ended his short rant and immediately walked towards the exit door.
With a nod and goodbye, he said “Aite, see you later man.”
Plastered with a rough beard and a scruffy look; the man probably in his late fifties gently held the lease on Ritta’s neck. With delight Ritta opened her mouth wide open happily receiving the sky’s cozy warmth. She had a brown and white fur, and her eyes carelessly moved from one unknown object to the other. Those large bright eyes of hers said it all. She was in good place and the love she had for her owner flowed effortlessly. Mr. fifties, as I often called him was not the picture-perfect owner, nor was he clean or well-kept. He had a faint odor which smelt like a hot afternoon carried deep away from the south. Unlike her owner, Ritta did not have any distinctive odor, in fact she smelt surprisingly better than Mr. fifties. Her toe-nails were well-groomed and her fur was silk-like smooth.
“I don’t know where my sister got Ritta from, but I love this dog, man,” Mr. fifties said. After which, he and Ritta began their walk back to whence they had come from.
Early in the morning with the sun still nowhere to be found, Ritta and her owner strolled down the quiet empty road while the cars refused the light of day and the birds talked about nectar and berries.