Posted in Poetry



Noel A. Ihebuzor

We are the broken ones

ones about to be broken

about to break again

soft wood stuck

between hammer and anvil

Debris like cloud dust

from fleeing time now

float in our semi-circular

canals, our tympanic membranes

tampered, in shreds and tatters

Swirling dusts of rage,

coloured by clan and clime

by breed and creed

cloud our vision

we see hazy in the enveloping mist

where truth lies supine

and lies triumph

Wise counsel struggles for hearing

but is ignored, the midwife of truth

has been sacked, a vicious grip

holds the throat of the sooth saying parrot

and trampled truth struggles still to rise

Let Him and Her that hath even one ear

listen and hear

let even the blind

see and read these prophecies

scripted hazily on these patchy papyrus

with ink drawn from the veins of the dying

Let Her, let Him

even the clumsy with a broken tongue,

a struggling stammer

sign sing these messages

to a deaf world

For in hearing,

and heeding

in reading, decoding and recoding

in listening and speaking

lies escape, recovery and renewal

and new beginnings

May the bond

of the heart bound in hatred

be broken, shattered

scattered in the dust

let scattered hopes regroup

to oppose doom and destitution

and broken hearts begin to mend,

rebuild, re-bond and rebound,

binding all bile and bitterness

casting them to funeral pyres

of unending infernos

***Feeeling blue on a Friday and worrying about my country!


Development and policy analyst with a strong interest in the arts and inclusive social change. Dabbles occasionally into poetry and literary criticism!

9 thoughts on “Lamentations

  1. There is a paradigm in life:

    Take a simplistic view and all you see is just black and white and the true complex nature of life is pushed aside. It is a fact that we are what we are not by choice – Igbo, Yoruba, English French. None of us choose to be what we are but for a mixture of chromosomes at the heat of passion. We must not worry about bigots whose fathers are their sons.

    The second part of the paradigm relates to taking life too seriously. We miss the fun that life can offer. The best way is to learn to laugh at ourselves, at our failures and at our nature. In doing these we acknowledge our place in the universe, We are not Captain Universe, we cannot do all things. But while laughing at my follies, I really do not invite others to laugh at me because they would be crossing the threshold, rather they should laugh at their own shortcomings and we all should then move on knowing our frailty and mortality.

    Borrowing from a famous Rabbi, I think if we Nigerians can start seriously doing a few of the things I list below we may heave a sigh of relief:
    1. Fight for justice whenever and however we can
    2. Use our time wisely – in other words be part of the solution. If you can create jobs and change minds and lives
    3. Live up to our potentials – believe that you can. Do not look onto others to solve your problems but work with people to reach your potentials and age is never a barrier
    4. Look for God – a person who believes is likely to have hope
    5. Love enough – never give up on love for yourself as God made you and for others as God made them
    6. Be Humble, be proud – By being humble you acknowledge that you are not better than other people. By being proud you acknowledge that God did not make a mistake making you whom you are.

    These are times that try men’s souls.


  2. We are survivors
    Yes the black survivors
    Like Shedrack, Meshak and AbaNegro
    Burning in the fire but we never get burnt
    Talking and preaching is done
    We got to live up! – Marley


  3. We are beset by bigotry everywhere we look in this country. While we can’t give up or pack up and leave, we are at least able to speak out in condemnation… We are simply an endangered species here…


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