His Fathers Son

It was around that age

When young soldiers begin

To grab hold of the world around them

in hopes of moulding their wings,

That he was met with silence.

That echoes cackled,

Crackling against the walls

Of his mother’s house,

Whispering secrets that speak with

The knowledge of a world that

Lived Before the empty rooms and picture frames.

Before home was a safe space for two,

And he woukdnt think twice

about befriending the stranger half of his name.

You see

For Little man….

Father was “him”,

a string of tales told, then cut cold,

Once he was old enough to shoulder the hymns.

Hed follow the djinn

Into whirls of make believe

to prise the gospel of a ghost from the relics

That littered their home.

An old watch,

A broken guitar and

his mother’s broken smile.

She sang sweetness into a stale story of kinship.

Sip by sip

Offering peace

A lucid liquors of speach

To Blur the lines of a character

Long since removed from action

Too broken a fraction to make whole

Every story told

Seemed mightier than the man frozen behind the frames

Folded under her tongue was a name

She learned to handle with care.

She sang

A crooked verse.

She sang

To settle his soul.

Sang to settle his soles,

His feet,

Were teeth,

Chewing up ever mile of yarn she spun,

Pacing to piece together pictures

Of the world before the silence.

She sang to seal the silence.

Singing

Until the sliding scales of her fiction

Settled into soured notes

And silence choked her diction

A friction yoked her

victim to the boats we rock

When we venture out in search of new worlds

The sickness of a sea

Sewn into peaks and valleys

She would have gladly kept hidden.

But still,

He was always the last one dancing when the music stopped

Always the last one sipping at the bittersweet tonic,

Of a time gone by.

Not yet introduced to the weight of the morning after the fact.

His mother

mused in melodies fraught with confusion,

Tracing her notes with care to show his father was no illusion.

Yes his father always moving,

And its hard to pin down shooting stars,

Just to save him something to wish for.

The Cadences in her carry ons of this phantom faced kin,

We’re wild with dissonance,

clouding his innocence,

Sometimes

I think,

she thought

He was him.

Because

He has his eyes, they say,

He has his lies,

they say,

He has his,

spirit,

but there is nothing in it

Because he can’t remember his ways.

The man was a fugitive.

Always on the run.

Avoiding in laws, never involved in trials,

Slipping into the night seeking solace in gile,

he knew the exits well.

Exit wounds swelled with reasons for his

leaving and never knowing him well.

The cloak and dagger deviant, cut the holes in family ties.

He left a home that taught the bond that only family ties.

You see

For Little

Father was always “him”,

a string of tales, told, then cut cold,

When I was old enough to shoulder the hymns.

But

He will be always tied to his truth.

He is his father son,

And everyday I worry what that would means for him.

Because

He has MY eyes they say

But shouls he should have MY lies

They say he has MY spirit

But there is nothing in it

If I cannot show him the way.

I have paraded with patch work pride

So as to hide my broken half.

Walking the four corners

To fork honour

Into a mouth full of words I can share

With this budding king

Blood and kin of a fool

I wish I knew

How a jester can do just

To be a gesture of love and legacy.

He’s been looking for a father,

I have been looking for sense.

I have shattered so many memories

In his mother’s heart

Why would I wait and watch start

To paint his pride on they way I did.

Watch my seed twist into the crooked sun

Of his father fire

I am tired

Of watching broken men

Raising broken sons.

I am tired

I am broken

I am “Him”

Breaking the Levy


I found him,

Hiding behind a banner of his newest constructions, scared of his own nature.

Why did the child feel he had to be old before his time?
Castrated by the perception of perfection,

let’s lay that myth to rest!

He has volleyed so much life,

yet let his palms soften and grow sterile in the corral of other men’s ideals,

Shunning the practicality of earning his own character.

Forgetting the offals and feasting on the lean meat of popular culture has starved his character from nourishing his own experience.

Judgement is a spectators sport,
The hesitant King will soon be impeached for his lack of actions.

When his council is the key stone of the kingdom what use is the man in his flowery crown.

The ornaments are weighing him down.

The crowd was safe in there assumptions,

they sedated the river inside this man and taught themselves well in the art of levying the wash.

Breach!

There is water in the streets!

Breach !

There is life inside his eyes!

Breach!

In comes the tide of a long restrained soul,

drowning out the cries of crowd uninitiated.

Welcome to my river run!!
(c) Saili Katebe

Sunrise

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My early call to rise rings out at the same time ever morning, 5 am. Every morning, at 5 am, I rock myself out of a shallow sleep, gather the scattered pieces of my focus and brace myself, ready to face the budding day at its root. I loathed dawn for so long, returning to it only through necessity.

I recently found hidden value and beauty in those early hours. It wasn’t the way in which the horizon bled as the sun stalked the weakening night sky. It wasn’t the tranquil air, alive with a heady mix of possibility and bird song , it was something different. It was the way it mediated my conflicting thoughts and gave my hope a backbone, the way it allowed my compass to settle to a true north, it allowed me to breath in the realisation that, like that rising sun, coming from everywhere, to embrace everything, I have to go far from comfort to pierce the blackness.

My eyes are drawn to the morning sun, with envy and curiosity. When 5 am arrives, I rise to chase a dream.

 

SUNRISE

As your golden arcs dissolve the night, I wonder where you’ve been.

you trace the distance silhouettes with ribbons of foreign fire.

Fermenting the swollen shadows by imposing your rosy sheen,

as your golden arcs dissolve the night, I wonder where you’ve been.

I’ve been tested by dawns return, the burn of an auburn, keen

to unfold the day, invoke a steam to power our souls desire.

With your golden arcs dissolving night, I wonder where you’ve been,

you trace the distance silhouettes with ribbons of foreign fire.

–  Triolet

(c) Saili Katebe

Why I love Ellaine!!

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The completion of Writing 201 was never to be the end of my poetic education. There will never be enough to learn, I wanted more. There is a wide range of tools that can claim my personal poetic arsenal as home, and I welcome them willingly, Its an incredible exercise in growth.. I made the acquaintance of the Villanelle at my first poetry workshop, Its a 19 line form that has 2 refrains inserted in particular portions of the piece, see if you can spot them. I would like to see more villanelles, the repetition was a tricky, but fun feature to implement. Here is mine, I hope I see yours too.

 

 

They pressed a promise to my palm, those nimble fingers, Miss Elaine,

Teased away the seething tumult, seeding sense to slay decay,

Miss Elaine, you’ve lent a hand that led my hopes away from pain.

 

Time has taught you tenderness, time and time again you’ve slain,

the numbing rein of doubt and angst, your golden touch has saved my days,

They pressed a promise to my palm, those nimble fingers, Miss Elaine.

 

Through every annum we faced as one, your warm embrace was my refrain

Those shallow grooves that trace your palm have funnelled happiness my way

Miss Elaine, you’ve lent a hand that led my hopes away from pain.

 

I stood beside you, at an alter your hands had forged for us to claim.

Forged with trust, your fingers crushed all uncertainty away,

They pressed a promise to my palm, those nimble fingers, Miss Elaine.

 

The seamless mould of interlocking calm, intimately framed

palms, claimed a couple, cupping hearts and slaying greys.

Miss Elaine you’ve lent a hand that led my hopes away from pain.

 

You saw the calluses in my character that taught the world to wield disdain,

and chose the strange approach, you stayed and washed the resin of hapless waves,

They pressed a promise to my palm, those nimble fingers, Miss Elaine,

Miss Elaine you’ve lent a hand that led my hopes away from pain.

 

(c) Saili Katebe

 

Writing 201, Assignment 10: Sonnet – Future

 

 

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The finale to Writing 201 was a long awaited. It brought a lovely end to the 10 days of prompts that fed the poets of WordPress with plenty of entertained, inspiration and creative challenge. The final prompt is one alive with possibility, for the post and for our endeavours as writers and individuals in general, “Future”. The piece is to be written in a classic poetic form, The Sonnet, which was sure to make an appearance in this poetry course in one way or another. I found it a fun challenge throwing the suggested device, Chiasmus, into use. Hopefully it has seasoned the piece with reasonable effect. Enjoy!

 

 

There is madness in my longing, longing in my madness,

there is sweetness when I sleep, I see summits of possibility.

The possibility of summits that sever a stagnant sadness,

the promise that waking up is enough to compose ability.

 

I sleep a while and slip away, in dreams that breach the present,

I reconcile with consciousness to rally a rise to action.

For action to rise, a rally must drive a stake through any presence,

that stifle my any means to feed my drive its traction.

 

I’m humbled by any pain that punctuates my ascension.

The periods of softened will, will soften if I persist.

There is truth inside these dreams that captivate my attention,

a truth that goes to prove that soon my future will exist.

 

I’m in love with possibility, Possibility with love entwined,

A future that found design in the sinews of passions bind.

 

 

 

(c) Saili Katebe

Writing 201, Assignment 9: Found Poetry – Highlands

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The colder touches of reality have teased my time into a nuggets of scarcity. I have neglected my shared words. This post is due, this should have been shared a week ago, leaving my contributions to Writing 201 incomplete. I apologise for the silence emanating from my corner. I am here to present my latest contribution to the challenge and re-establish my voice.

The form of the day was, found poetry. Collection of words, letters, from an existing text to create a new piece. I wasn’t able to submit any of my draft ransom notes, as they could still come in handy in the future, however I made an attempt at creative a piece with a new addition to my poetic arsenal, erasure. The prompt was landscape, and using enumeration.

For this piece, I used a text entitled “Land of Little Rain” by Mary Austin.

 

found poetry

 

 

I was lost for ways of structuring the verse. I only truly saw it as the piece as I carved it out of the original text. Here is the Verse separate to the rest of the text.

 

This is nature.

There are hills,

squeezed up,

aspiring to be high in a blue haze.

Streaked with water

in the hollows of closed valleys,

levels of steep and heavy,

never quite dry,

deposits of marsh

which open to the wind

in cannon.

This country,

brackish and unwholesome,

maddening,

dribbles soil where the air calms the pale sky.

Earth crys for downpours,

bursts of love.

Writing 201, Assignment 8: Ode – Ode to my Journal

 

Writing-is-art

I have broken the flow. As it stands, today, I am a day behind on Writing 201. Here is yesterdays assignment, better late than never.

Another day, another assignment. The ode, today’s (yesterdays) poetic form, is a longer piece with a more intricate structure, and is very much new to me. This assignment was another impressive contributor to my poetic education, I learned a great deal as I dived into the new and wonderful world of odes. I learned words like Strophe, Antisrophe, and Epode. Most importantly, I was fortunate enough to learn what an ode actually is. Needless to say I was , yet again, thrown well out of my comfort zone, and had my creativity and perseverance tested. I attempted to make this as much of an ode as I could, doing my best to follow brief. The prompt for the day was “Drawer” and out of my drawer I drew out, my journal.

Without further ado, I give to you, “Ode To My Journal” utilizing, Apostrophe.

 

You are never very far, you are stowed, to steal my mind,

still but never losing your zeal for holding ink.

We build and fill you wildly with every drop I can find

of the force that feeds my reasoning, soul and paper are linked.

Your have ledges bartered as ledgers for secrets I never told,

You have spattering thoughts bled from a struggle I couldn’t speak,

Of cumbersome weeks spent redefining my own being.

That silent vigil awaiting me, tucked in my tables hold,

is gold, it tips the scales of my mind, when tongue is weak.

You can picture every corner of me, without seeing.

 

For all your patient moments, so humbly poised, listening,

you have never spoken up to steady my ailing truth.

Your bathing in rugged strokes, ink on the page glistening

frustrates me, I’m waiting for something to set you loose.

I’m tired of your reminders, I’m well aware of the falls,

the fire that ate my bridges and landed me in despair.

You only talk in echo’s, you mirror my oldest prose,

summon your own voice, my mind has summoned its walls.

Your silence is suffocating, you need to feed me with air.

I’m tempted to keep you hidden, leaving your pages closed.

 

I’m troubled by burning prose, and unimagined mementos

you are the only aid that can save me wasting the fruit.

I’m furious when I struggle, when troubled by empty thoughts,

I appreciate your patience in all my written pursuits.

I’m a loose cannon of anger when words are hardest to find,

you’re kind and cope with tantrums, that take me out of my mind.

We often defy reason, with mine, your minds weaken the binds,

that tie me to the limitations of logic.

 

(c) Saili Katebe

Writing 201, Assignment 7: Poem Prose – Finger Painting

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Assignment seven, you were a cruel mistress. You came in the form of Poem Prose, and asked me to weave a piece with a prompt absolutely ripe with possibilities, “Fingers”. Alliteration was covered earlier one in Writing 201, and the vowels have now been offered a chance to enjoy their share of repetition. I’m aware that I unconsciously implement alliteration in my pieces. However, I did tried to incorporate assonance in today’s piece.

The piece started life as free write, and I quickly watched my editorial hand fail, swiftly overpowered by emotions of deep attachment. The length and structure of the piece could benefit from a more objective approach, however today, emotions win. Maybe next time. Enjoy!

A mailable palm of properties collect to construct this, Soul. Cradling a life form that teeters along the edge of things, wonders the waves of time, in time to be cradled by earth.

Listen to, the tapping tentacles, digits. These fingers of feeling, fidget. These are my emotional appendages, claiming a canvas wildly. Its through there numerous trails, overlapping in open air, that my peers form a picture of me.

They are alive with activity. Aiming there tips around me, swarming with hues of, everything. Where everything connects, the palm, collects the abstract. You can see the hand I was dealt, its touching. The mandibles whelp, at nothing, at time I am held as a prisoner as they wrap into a fist and forget me.

They stretch themselves in cannon whenever need and impulse impede. Anger has harshened strokes, envy forever emulates. Sorrow undoes me, under the pale shades it presses into existence. Happiness elevates my every steps with forever triumphant ease, I bleed these spectrum’s. Greed grabs at the edges, praying maybe there is more to have, but moments have me wanting more, control.

Its a morbid bag of inching whims that have latched themselves to living. I cant grasp a fuller picture when they roam as wildly as they used to. My nerves are growing steady now, fewer tremors inviting staggered stroke.

They are flailing metronome tips, that the winds of change provoke. They have marked time in memories. These fingertips, with fingerprints of an ambiguous spectrum, have walked the ivory keys of new beginnings and played my ballad, to a time signature they cannot forge.

 

(c) Saili Katebe