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Ojota

By

Obododimma Oha

Some rank odour approaches me as I approach
the city, presents a clenched fist to my frightened nose

The breath of refuse that refuses
civilized welcome, it only yawns into my decency

Perhaps this is where we choose roads:
straight on, to pretend difference, in high halls;
towards the right, to face everyday battles, in piddle & pressure

Should I have asked:
Where is
the shoddy look an Oshodi used to wear,
or the marred modernity of a Maroko?
Always there is an extra mile beyond Mile 2
in this journey to a story
laden with smells.

Where a city begins is where its beauty ends

Now it wears its odours loosely
Like many years of failed hygiene
Each time welcoming some goodbyes –happy-to-miss-you

Ojota is more than random jottings
on someone’s governance notepad
a place where the Past Tense of government
shifts to a tensed up Present.
Recent posts

Saling these thoughts to the next UniVerse

i’m octobering on, hoping to locate the boundary between time & being
i’m mooning around an elusive plan of a planet
i’m righting a folding sail that complains about a nuclear amnesia
i’m mooning this fifth element, timing this timeless thought
soon to explode

--- Obododimma Oha

Gandhi in Rio

A soul that seeks
To find a Brazil whose zeal
Breaks down barriers
Between your speech and my silence

--- Obododimma Oha

Who Sits in Pa's Place, Telling Stories?

By

Obododimma Oha

In my Pa’s parlour, everyone has their own space and everyone’s space means. Everything, too, has its place, defined in relation to other things. There is the special place where Pa used to sit, from where he watched things that went on or watched everyone too. Pa always said we were all stories and were part of the stories that he told. When Pa was not around, like when he eventually slept and did not wake up again, Ma sat in his place, watching and also telling stories. In that way, Pa’s place was kept; the stories were kept. And the stories kept us.

Pa used to sit there, telling bearded stories. Stories of Mbe nwa Aniga holding a debate with Chukwu-abia-amuma. Stories of braves who went to the land of the spirits and defeated them in wrestling matches. Stories of why things are as they are. Stories of Wit slugging it out with Folly. Stories about values and the invaluable good life. Stories and stories and stories about stories in stories. Pa used to sit there, faci…

He Lived His Fictions (for Michael Jackson)

--Obododimma Oha

He lived his fictions, charmed moonwalker
Now frozen in the crescendo of his song

Many selves of lyrics embodied, disembodied, re-embodied
Yield, ecstasies, like this flexible

Was this self yourself?
Was this other in order?
Was this self selfless in melting hearts with ghostliness?

He lived his fictions, died his reality
Somewhere like nowhere on the maps of motion

Archangel to many visions
He stands at the threshold of changing myths
Necklace

And the crawling fear reaches
Beyond the silence of icon,
Breathes down its de/signs
Into a narrative of the faithful native

-- Obododimma Oha

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