A Melancholic Night
It was a stormy night in summer,
People had slept peacefully,
Because of the pleasant weather.
Some frogs were croaking continuously,
Outside the window of my dark room,
The roof of which was covered with tin.
A Beetle was heedlessly droning,
Perhaps from a safe place during rain.
It had been raining incessantly,
With sudden slow thunder and lightning.
I could not think of sleeping peacefully,
Many perplexed thoughts crossed my mind,
What l contemplated l cannot give vent of,
With a few mere words of my language.
Suddenly, l noticed the shrill cry,
Of every drop of water falling from,
The sky to the tin roof of my room,
With a sad rhythmic and steady tone.
Melancholy left her spell on me,
And l heaved a deep sigh and…….
Exists therein, the Old One
Kolawole Mathew Ogundipe
Is it not the image of the same man spotted in a photograph that is seen in reality? Is it not the real image of a woman standing in front of a mirror, seen by the woman herself? Absolutely YES it is: the content of one thing is a factor and/or manifestation of the other; and the first thing (material or human) gives the outlook of the next thing to come. In addition to the above statements is that the degree of the sincerity of one’s declarations (i.e. one’s promises to others) is a yardstick to measuring the product of such declarations. A mere mouth-declared promise will certainly have little, light, or no product at all. Thus, I want to say, at this juncture, that in the New Testament of the Holy Bible, the Old Testament exists.
There is the realisation of the contents of the Old Testament, particularly those places in the Testament where God made promises to His precious children, in the New Testament, which shows the unfailing love of God to His children. A few evidences of the above assertion can be drawn from the books of Joel and Acts; Genesis and Matthew; Isaiah and Matthew respectively. In the book of Joel 2:28-29 for instance, God, through prophet Isaiah says,
“And afterward I will pour out My spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see vision”.
The outset of the book of Acts accounts for the coming of the Holy Spirit upon, first, Jesus’ disciples, and second, to as many that listened to the preaching of Jesus’ disciples then, and accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour. The Holy Spirit, after He descended upon them, made certain strange things happened to them. For example, the book of Acts 2:1-4 says, “…and they were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues (languages)”. Also, Acts 10:44, informs us the coming of the Holy Spirit upon multitude of people that were listening to Peter while preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. Finally, Paul’s vision is told in Acts 16:9.
God, in the book of Genesis12:3; 15:4-5and 17:2, made promise of many descendants to Abraham, who happens to be the ancestor of all Christians today. “I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you… (Genesis 2:3)”. To our dear knowledge, Matthew 1:17 announces forty-two generations from Abraham down to the birth of Jesus Christ; all the aforementioned generations in the quoted bible descended from him. This shows the reality of all what are contained in the cited chapters in Genesis. Even till today, all Christians are referred to as Abraham’s descendants.
Furthermore, Isaiah prophesied the birth of Jesus in Isaiah 7:14, “Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign: behold, the woman who is unmarried and a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel”. The fulfilment of this is found in Matthew 1:18-21. So, with a critical look at the instances given from the Holy Bible (both in the Old Testament and New Testament), and explanations, one can say that the reality of the contents of the Old Testament is in the New Testament. Our God is sincere: He does not make unfulfilled promises as humans do. One bible verse says that if earth passed and heaven passed, a bit of God’s word would never go unfulfilled.
The Innocent Blood
Onipede, Festus Moses
Act 2 Scene 1
(Procession to the police station with individual carrying placards with inscriptions: End police brutality, End Customs killing)
(Actors- The police, D. P. O, smugglers, sergeant Kolo, the army, colonel Ahmed, Bólájí, Kòtófò)
Smugglers: Àwa ò fe áwa ò fé o, áwa ò fé (singing) We do not agree, we do not agree.
Smugglers’ Leader: End police brutality (shouting in front of the police station).
Smugglers: End Customs killing (replying their leader)
Smugglers’ Leader: We are here for the release of our members in your custody. We give you five minutes to do the needful, otherwise we will destroy this place.
The Police: Hands up! (started shooting in the air).
Smugglers: We are ready for you. Continue shooting.
Smugglers’ Leader: Destroy the gate (He orders when the police ran out of arms and ammunition).
Smugglers: Where are your axes (They all started cutting the iron gate).
D.P.O: Protect yourself (He orders his colleagues).
Sergeant Kòló: Sir, we are running out of arms and ammunition.
Smugglers: Where are they? (Chasing the police out of the station).
Smugglers’ Leader: Our members are here (pointing at the direction).
Àselà! (Calling on one of the smugglers in the cell).
Àselà: Yes Sir! (He replied).
Smugglers’ Leader: Everybody come out! It has come to our notice that those Customs ordered the police to incarcerate you. We can’t close our eyes and see our people suffering here. Now, the war has not ended. We need to continue with our struggle. End police brutality
Smugglers: End Customs killing (They all replied).
Smugglers’ Leader: Now, I charge you people to cooperate with me. We need to get ourselves prepared because we don’t know the Police and Customs next action. Make your charms potent every day. In unity we shall overcome these brutality and killing. Since our government cannot provide us job, we need to make our living from smuggling.
Smugglers: Àwa ò fé áwa ò fé ò, áwa ò fe … (Singing as they are leaving the Police Station).
Smugglers’ Leader: Wait everybody! (Addressing the members). It’s like these police have invited the army to attack us o! I can hear them shooting towards this place. All I know, be on alert. They will meet us here.
The Army: Stop everybody! If you move we go waste you (Addressing the smugglers).
Colonel Ahmed: Fire! (He ordered his people).
Smugglers’ Leader: Kíló njé sójà, kíló njé móbà níwájú òrùka níwájú ìgbàdí re kíló njé sójà?…(Who is a soldier, who is a mobile police in the presence of your magical rings and ìgbàdí (a kind of charm).
Smugglers: Kíló njé sójà…. (They repeat the song).
Smugglers’ Leader: Attention! (Addressing both the police and the army). You all think you are holding arms and munitions. But see what you are holding, they are sticks! Igi lásán lásán! Ordinary stick! Collect the sticks from them (He ordered his men).
The D.P.O: Run for your dear lives (He ordered the other police and the army).
Smugglers’ Leader: Why are you people running? So you people are cowards. You only think that you can intimidate us with your rifles.
Act 2 Scene 2
(At the road linking the state to the border area).
Smugglers’ Leader: Today, we are going to surprise the Customs. We are going to attack their checkpoints and after this, you people should start smuggling rice through the highways.
Smugglers: We are ready.
Smugglers’ Leader: Set the checkpoint ablaze (Pointing to the checkpoint).
Customs Officer: Shoot them! (He ordered his colleagues).
Smugglers’ Leader: Aìgbókú okó, aìgbókú àdá. Kò séni tólè ya omi ní kókó; àyàfi tí ó bá dìí sínú òrá. Enìkan kìí mú aféfé so lókùn (Incantation). Nobody hears the death of hoe, nobody hears the death of cutlass. Nobody dares tie water; unless it is sealed in nylon, and nobody dares tie air (He ordered his men to start attacking the Customs).
Customs’ Leader: Hello! Please instruct your men to join us here. The smugglers are attacking our people (Making a phone call).
The Army: Where are they? (Shooting).
The Farmer: Yeepa! Mogbé o! Àwon sójà to yìbon fún mi o! (Groaning).
I’m dead. The soldiers had shot me in head.
The Smugglers: Oh my God! This man is dead.
Smugglers’ Leader: Who kill him?
Smugglers: It’s a stray bullet.
Smugglers’ Leader: These people are shedding innocent blood. Why can’t they kill us?
Smugglers: They can’t!
Smugglers’ Leader: We can’t fold our hands and see our people dying every day.
Smugglers: Yes Sir!
Smugglers’ Leader: We are not going to kill these Customs officers but we will make them disabled. If you see any of them, cut their hands and legs. They will live to tell their stories to unborn generation.
Smugglers: Yes Sir!
Smugglers’ Leader: Here they are. Do the needful (Directing his men to act on his advice).
Smugglers: Yes! We cut off one of his legs.
Smugglers’ Leader: Really?
Smugglers’ Leader: Yes! We also cut off one of his hands.
Smugglers’ Leader: Kudos to you people!
Act 3 Scene1
(At Kòtófò’s house)
(Actors: Àselà, Bólájí, smugglers’ leader, bàbaláwo, captain Dan, Customs)
Àselà: What happened to my father? (Crying)
Bólájí: Our father died a month ago.
Àselà: Who killed him?
Àselà: What did they come and do here?
Bólájí: He was killed by stray bullet on his way back from farm.
Àselà: Ah! I am finished (Crying). Those Customs will see fire. So they incarcerated me to kill my father. I won’t take it easy with them. I must retaliate.
Smugglers’ Leader: Good afternoon (Knocking at the door).
Àselà: Who is there?
Smugglers’ Leader: It’s your boss.
Àselà: My boss!
Smugglers’ Leader: I am Kátamì, the Jagaban of fàyàwó.
Àselà: Bólájí! Please open the door.
Smugglers’ Leader: Àse- là! Orí lómo isé àselà.
Àselà: You are welcome, Jagaban (Prostrating). Sir, the man that was killed when I was in the police cell was my father.
Smugglers’ Leader: Really? (In surprise).
Àselà: Yes of course.
Smugglers’ Leader: Winner never quit. No retreat no surrender. We must retaliate this time. I will order my boys to waste them this time.
Àselà: I only inform you before I personally take action. I am going to deal with them severely.
Smugglers’ Leader: Ok. Let me instruct my boys about the new development.
Àselà: All right Sir. Good to see you.
Act 3 Scene 2
(At bàbaláwo’s place)
Àselà: Àborúboyè o!
Àselà: Bàbá, I am in agony o. l lost my father some days ago. It was those Customs that killed him.
Bàbaláwo: What! Where were you then?
Àselà: I was in police detention.
Bàbaláwo: Oh! We must pay them back in their own coins. Àselà, touch your chest (He ordered Àselà). Don’t worry. Though your father is dead, you still have fathers. I will prepare some concoctions for you. But do not reveal your secret to anybody.
Àselà: I will not tell anybody, baba.
Bàbaláwo: I will give you àféèrí, ògùn ondè, kánàkò, ayeta and so on.
Àselà: Bàbá, I will be grateful.
Bàbaláwo: (Directing him to move closer) You will need to use this one now. This incision is for bullet proof. This ìgbàdí is for killing your enemies. Whenever you hit anybody with it, the person will die instantly. You can also use it for kánàkò if you wish to cover a long distance within a second.
Àselà: Bàbá, I am grateful!
Act 3 Scene 3
(At stores in the market loaded with bags of rice)
Smugglers’ Leader: (Dialing a phone number on his phone) Good evening, Àselà.
Àselà: Good evening, Jagaban.
Smugglers’ Leader: Get yourself kitted and meet us at the market. The Customs are there packing the bags of rice smuggled inside the stores.
Customs: (Shooting sporadically) Fire! Fire! Fire!
Àselà: You mean you can shoot? Today is your last day (He hits the Customs Officer with ìgbàdí).
Smugglers’ Leader: Good of you, Àselà!
Àselà: Where are others?
Smugglers’ Leader: Some of them have run away. Àselà, there is one over there. Waste him.
Àselà: I think I need to set their vehicles ablaze.
Smugglers’ Leader: Better.
Àselà: I heard that their oga has invited the army to join them. No problem, they will meet us here.
Smugglers’ Leader: They have arrived.
Àselà: Ok. I will finish them.
Captain Dan: Where are they? (He immediately saw Àselà). Stop there. You are under arrest.
Àselà: (He hits him with ìgbàdí). Today is your last day.
The curtain fall.
Home at least
Christopher T. Dabrowski
I was born in Krakow. I decided to travel the world. The trip was fantastic. I came back happy and very tanned. I got off the plane at the airport near Krakow. I got on a train to the city centre, which was shattered with smog.
Home at least.
Suddenly someone attacked me. I fell on the sidewalk. A bald hooligan stood above me.
– Get the fuck out of here! – he was screaming. – Poland for Poles.
I didn’t manage to answer.
– Sieg hail! – He roared extending his hand in a characteristic gesture.
Kicked me and went away.
Home at least…
An interview with Khosiyat Rustam, The Editor-In-Chief of The Book World Newspaper and Poet from Uzbekistan
1/Good morning and thank you for accepting my invitation for this interview. I have had the opportunity to look at your impressive background, but I like to give you a chance to tell us about yourself in brief.
1. I’m sure you watched my house from the outside! But, I believe that no matter how luxurious the house may seem, it is clear that its interior is in my possession. Many years ago, while sitting at a school desk reading a book by Pushkin, I heard that my grandmother had died. There were no cell phones at that time. My teacher came up to me and said, “You can go home.” The next lesson was algebra. I didn’t ask “why?” Because I hated algebra, I picked up my bag that was heavier than myself and headed home. And my thoughts were the heaviest … As I approached the house, I saw that our house was full of people. My mother and aunt were weeping out. I ran into the room where my grandmother’s was lying down.
I put my hand to her face. Her face was cold, my body shivered unexpectedly… My grandmother was covered with a sky-blue blanket. I touched my grandmother’s breast under the bed, it was hot… Anyway my heart was frozen. My childhood was facing death for the second time. I was very surprised then. My grandmother, who was alive while I was going to school in the morning, suddenly died… What will I do then? Isn’t my grandmother, who always stood up for me when my mom and dad scolded, present anymore in this world? Two drops of tears came from my eyes and dripped on my grandmother’s face. At that moment, my mother, who was wearing some cloth as a belt on her back, came in and said, “You don’t have a grandmother who always stood up for you,” and hugged me, then she began to cry. I started crying out loud too … This time I was crying out of pity for myself, not for my grandmother. Really, who will stand up for me from today on? The cries grew louder as my grandmother was being taken away … I felt like I was alone in this world for the first time … It was the second death I had ever seen! The first one is similar, but I was the only participant … There would be a small ditch at the end of our yard. Water was trickling from this ditch …
One day I took a small bucket and went to take water and was horrified to see a bird stretching out. I held it slowly, the bird was alive … it opened its eyes slightly. I ran towards the house, thinking in my mind that my parents could help the bird. But no one paid attention. When I went back to the bird, the bird was trembling. I don’t know where my fear went, I took the bird ocn my hand … At that moment a tear rolled from the bird’s eye … I agreed to be in the bird’s case at that moment. It was the most ruthless, the first poem I ever encountered …
2/Why do you write? Who or what inspired you to be a poet?
2. I don’t still know why I write, but if I did, I knew even that I could not write? These two deaths, in which my childhood collided, turned me from head to toe into a different person. I was scared. Whoever I saw seemed to die tomorrow. Especially when I saw older people, I couldn’t get away in front of them, I wanted to do something good to them. In this life, it was as if they wouldn’t be tomorrow, as if I was seeing them for the last time. My inside was full of tears. In those days, my tears flowed on the papers. I felt relieved and this situation made me live with only paper and pencil day by day. I started living between capital and small letters. I learned to sing in texts at that time. Commas have become my backbone. Syllables and rhymes refreshed my soul. There were a lot of question marka and exclamation points. Sometimes I hated the dots, I would say if they weren’t present. The dots reminded me of death, for some reason …
3/ When did you start writing poetry? Do you remember the first time you wrote something
3. The day the bird cried and died, I left this world. A drop of tears flowing from a bird’s eye was the point set for my childhood. I grew up that day. I saw with my own eyes what life is like. Naturally, the bird had no one but me that day. As I looked around, I realized that the world I was looking at was not worth a dime. And that day I wrote a poem about a bird. That was my first poem …
4/What does poetry mean to you ?
4. Poetry means everything to me! It is love and the only power that can keep me in this world! Nothing else in the world could hold me back. I’m stubborn to death, it’s hard to reconcile with me. Life has found a way to reconcile with me, tying me to sharia put. I am connected to it with all my living cells …
5/What is, according to you, the role of a poet in Today’s society?
5. I don’t think the poet’s position is in society, and I don’t believe his/her position is determined by society! Society should not interfere with the poet. I have nothing to do with society! Let the society do its job. Let it live knowingly. The place of the poet is known after his/her death. The place of the poet is known after the world is empty. Then a statue is placed on him/her. They want to fill in the blanks. A poet who was not let be in himself/herself during his/her life will not be let alone with oneself in the grave …
6/Do you have any particular audience in mind when you write, an ideal reader ?
6. When I write, I don’t think about anything other than writing faster. I just think about writing faster, very fast, and getting rid of that situation faster. No matter how enjoyable the writing process, I want to move on to another situation as soon as possible. I’m afraid to stay long. In the vein the blood circulation carries out its distance with such precision that you know for sure that the process is absolutely not in your hands. So, in this situation, it is much better to think about survival than to think about the reader.
7/What do you do as a hobby?
7. My hobby is reading unread books! I read what I read before to relax.
8/How can we experience the infinite mystery of the universe through the practice of poetry?
8. This situation is difficult to understand and explain, as if you were interfering in His work. We are ruled only by Allah, we can never rule ourselves, because we are not in our own hands. The pen in our hand also writes with His gesture and obeys His command. I don’t know anything else and don’t want to admit it.
9/How does it take you to complete all drafts and inquiries necessary to complete a poem?
9. As I said in the previous answer, it is filled only by His will …
10/Which book that you have written is your favourite and what are your top three books?
10. My books are my living secrets! I refuse to say good or bad about each of them. Because each of them was washed away with my tears. It was washed with blood in my veins. While this sounds like a bit of a high-sounding statement, I say it because I felt it and saw it with my own eyes.
11 / What are you currently working on ? Also what are you reading at present?
11. I am busy with learning English these days. I feel like a child whose tongue is newly being formed now. I am studying every word with great passion and love. I love it … And at the same time, I’m working on my new book, ”We Were in the World too.” And just today, I picked up to read Jojo Moyes’ book, “Me before you”
12 / Poetry is the wrath of a person sitting in loneliness. How do you manage your time to write and work?
12. It’s hard to control my time as much as I can’t control myself … I get all my revenge from sleep!
13 / Which poets have inspired you? Do you feel yourself influenced by the writing style of a poet?
13. I’ve talked about this before … And I will tell once again, I have loved Pushkin so much! So far, every morning I wake up with his name. When I was a child, for me only Pushkin existed … I also read his pictures. When I was tired of the world, I would hide in his voice … I would live in his hair.I would disappear into his eyes so as not to be seen. I have lived with many poets since then, but, I have not imitated anyone. I had to build myself up looking at them.
14 / What are your greatest accomplishment as a poet?
14. My biggest achievement is that I haven’t care anyone, Neither with society nor with people. I have lived with myself and myself again! I have cared about my pure feelings. I have loved my spouse and become a loving mother to my children. I have fallen in love with the trees. Sometimes I was jealous of the birds, I was jealous of the winds. How many times have I died when they came and fawned over the trees. I have held the edge of the sky, and when I put the moon on my wrist like a bracelet, it was so beautiful that the stars didn’t just kill themselves. For my whole life I have caressed my thoughts with my eyes and I have lived by protecting my longing for Him between my teeth.
15 / What are the books you regard as the all time readable?
15. I read Bulgakov to come to myself when my soul is away from my body. Jack London opened my eyes, Rabindranath Tagore taught me silence. I went crazy reading Tolstoy … Dreyzer taught me to cry, I learned to pray from Rumi and Navoi … Turgenev stayed cruel for me …
These are so many that I respond to those who are looking behind the wall only by shaking my heart with love!
16 / The poet and authors you like the best?
16. They are quite a lot! And there are so many that I don’t want to list any of them in stair form.
17 / If you could choose to be a character of in a book, Who would it be?
17. The best mother in the world!
18 / What , according to you, is love?
18. I cannot answer this question. Because the crackling sound of love inside me prevents from that.
19 / Please let the readers know about your projects for future? And please share any stanza you have written and you repeat it most of the times?
19. I can only say one thing about my future projects, I will be leaving for Iowa soon. My words sound like leaving for another world. I’m in a hurry, I’m in a hurry somewhere. I feel in every breath that I need to write more . The purpose of studying in Iowa is to write rather than study!
Concentrating in one place. Managing myself, observing and meeting myself … And that’s a lot!
20 / What is your message to the young posts ? Can you at this moment mention few numbers of talented yonger poets of the your country?
20. I would advise young people to just value time. They are so smart, they are just too generous about spending time. We can only achieve something if we are stingy with time. And we have to be careful with the word, we do not have right to waste any single word. We have a lot of poets … When I say poet, I mean only talented ones. Just because we need a translator, we can’t present poetry to the world …
21 / Please describe life in two lines?
21. I once wrote in a poem called “The inscription on my grave”, “I lived a whole lifetime … running and saw all after coming here!”
22 / What have your achievement been to date?
22. Let me give you a biography of mine!
23 / Please tell us in brief about the political scenario of your country.
23. Every area has its own people. I find it very boring. That’s why I’m not interested in it , I have a lot more to do. In any case, no one carries a gun to my head and tells me not to write. That’s what’s important to me. On the other hand, it looks as miserable as the ragged shirt I once wore and worn out.
24 / You are the Editor-in-Chief of The World Newspaper. What would say about the current status of world poetry as an editor of a world-wide newspaper?
24. There are many poem writers but few poets. They don’t have a poem, but they are many who consider themselves poets. As I wrote in one poem of mine, this world is the sea! The sea has everything. Separating the pearls and sinking the empty boats into the water is nothing for this life. The future will do it in one fell swoop …
25 / Thank you so much for your time and all the revealed details. Do you want to add some more for our readers now?
25/ I wish the same as I do with my own readers. Please don’t just be a simple reader!