Posted in Poetry

Time and bitterness

By Noel Ihebuzor

I, Time will take bitterness
and make it history
in my time

a gentle wand
will erase the scars
left by the barbed lips,
in my time

my breath soft smoothens
that hard tongue,
formerly sour and metal acerbic
and fills it
with sweetness
all in my time,

***Susan Daniel”s wonderful poem this link prompted this response

Posted in Poetry

Thoughts on Time – A duet

By Noel Ihebuzor and Susan Daniels

the sound of time
being kept
but never held

compare this to the heart

beating, ticking
bleeping, never sleeping
yet not keeping time
just hugging and holding scents
and traces from its irreversible passage

if we are keeping time
it should be measured
in pulses never wound
but still driving days
in matched rhythms

rhythmic pulsations
pounding in sync to our
logics and metres, fixed and elastic
always beating, heaving, trembling,
ever flowing, fluid but always alive,
even when we no longer are

yes, endless
in the pulse
we match, but briefly.
what drives us
in metered language
these words a drum
a greater syncopation

we march to match
to catch that syncopation
moving our soles
and souls along trails
at once linear and at twice
circular, always forward
and occasionally recursive


***Another spontaneous poetic conversation on Time with Susan.  As always, it is a pleasure to write with Susan, whose words are italicized. Mine are in regular text.

Posted in Prose

Idle rambles – echoes from the past, voices of the present, whispers from the future

By Noel Ihebuzor

I hear echoes of my future playing in the present on scripts lip read by this me hewn from a crusty past that now reaches forward to embrace me smiling on a surprised morning

The me I see you see now is not me but visions of me mingled with snippets of your retina, aching stories heard on a tympanum tremulous, this me singing, in another voice, another’s voice, this me that you hear hears you echoing dimly lofty notes of me, singing of roads I walk on dew drunk dreams, nudging sluggish limbs to where I began, to where I want to go to unearth the buried umbilical cord that ties me, my present, my past and my future. And the vision is misty and my voice mushy.

I hear and feel the turning of time. I feel I sense myself also turning in that fine running sand of time, finding my present and rediscovering my past, reliving it and becoming, reaching out to embrace a future that runs from me, slightly ahead even as the distances narrow.

I see the familiar smiles of the new and reach out to feel and wrest it whilst still trying to anchor to the present I know and think I own. I am aware of  the changed yet unchanging times, the turning times, time returning and reappearing, the changing of the seasons, the trees that weep and mourn, the trees that announce new beginnings as green leaves sprout, unfurl and unfold and wave to  a smiling sun, lovely greening days, swaying in the cycling circle of time.

And I think I hear the voice that reaches from eternity to say – nothing really changes, save the way humanity looks at unchanging times, and me saying – “even knowing that change in a unchanging change is good enough for me”.

Posted in Poetry

Fizzy feelings and Fuzzy physics: #6 – Time

By Noel Ihebuzor and Susan Daniels

Monosyllable rich in polysemy
endless, stretching fabric enfolding layers
of meanings, deeper than the infinite
finite, endless, far and near
seamless unity, past, present, future merged
was, is and will, history and hope
defiant of human labels

Eternity the endless is;
neither forward nor back,
but everything now, old and new
the cry of creation echoed
by foothills wrapped in morning mist
reflecting the hum underneath sound,
an ageless shout

Stretched out in space
travelling and rolling
never straight, never monotone, velocity varying
in your kinks and loops,
you dance backwards to lace and trap the minds
of the traveler looking backwards from the present
reaching backwards to embellish images and events
with generous sweet strokes and paintbrushes, dripping nostalgia

We can only chart your path,
a journey from now to the less-now
colored by memory–beautiful,
instructive, instinctive;
more art than accuracy
in the retelling.  Still, we rise
from what we think shapes us
to this moment, the moment now past

The beat of the pounding heart
the chimes of throbbing bodies
measure of rhythmic flows
the pulsing vibrating instruments
ogene, piano, ekwe, flute all sing and hum
with you, imperfect mirrors of your rhythm and soul

Yes, we keep time,
counting in fours and swings
and steps, our imposed order
an accompaniment
to your dance through and with us

Measure of intensity, streaming shooting jet
fast as light, often twice as swift
for those in present passion
crawling slow overweight snail for those who wait
rhythm ancient undying
constant motion, flowing streams
defying all our puny efforts
to trap, define and fix your roaming endless stroll
numberless, units without limits, objective
us subjective
the time traveler’s delight, mind shuttles between epochs
gone to relive, coming to feel and anticipate and feel
through frosty crystal balls,
shady mind prisms and tired eyes permitting
astral and mind travels
mind dragging body

Our error
the attempt to capture
or predict your movements,
when we should simply
play within your loops
that wrap us loosely
and then tighten; you are truly
constantly swallowing your own tail

the measure of seasons, defying seasons
ebbing and flowing
value and value, always subjective, never same,
the marriage of intensity, attitude ,
people, person and place parade and prance in your amber
producing passion, patience and pleasure
thundering and thumping

Like you, we should
open these mouths to swallow the past
in endless loops of hunger,
taste what has been
on the way, strengthening us
for the race to what will be

your rolling boundless presence
a glimpse into eternity
no boundaries, binding, bonding
all who live, breathe
feeling raptures and ruptures
departures, returns, beginnings and endless endings without end

the eternal dance and mystery of you

** Susan has wonderfully summarised the genesis of this duet on Time in her post below! Need I say more? Except the obvious – that it is always a pleasure to sing with Susan. My voice is in bold, Susan’s is italicized!

***My duet partner caught inspiration for this jogging on the beach in Dar es Salaam; sent me his lines, and I answered from Eden.  The actual time it took to write this piece together was under an hour, I believe, and I love its spontaneity and movement!  Hope you do too. (Susan)