Naming Game


With only 7 weeks until we meet, I speak my thoughts to your future. Your mother and I are overflowing with gladness. Our sweet flower will finally find air, our legacy finally finds breath, soaking up a new world through eyes glowing with the muted knowledge of a creator that only babies know. That day can’t come any sooner.

A rose by any name will still smell as sweet. Yet here we are pealing the world apart to find the right words for our blessing. With the thousand words that have shaped your mothers world and mine, we are at odds trying to choose the perfect one for our perfect one. We have been sitting around, pulling at names from old books, turning back the hands of time and revisiting the strongest branches in our family trees, all in the hopes of  anointing your presence. There is power in a name.

I’ve been thinking about calling you Faith, a word that carries weight in my world as well as hers. Your mother and I have learned Faith in many forms, all of which have offered the same warmth, the same strength, the same patience that helped endure so much. Faith has been a lifeline unhindered by any boreders, race, language and culture have never been able stifle its reach. It was Faith that kept us so sold on love, we didn’t stop to take stock of the differences culture would make. It is Faith that keeps us resilient, aiding our journey into unison.

I’ve been thinking about calling you Hope. Everyday I hope to see you grow, not so fast that you learn to leave me, just enough to watch the making of an angel. I hope to one day hear you speak, to see you learn the power of language. I hope that over time my last name wont be an inconvenience to your tongue, that you won’t care for how bitter sweet your name sounds against the tonality of my fathers own. I hope that you will always see, seamlessly, these threads that your mother and I have spent years learning to weave together. The twines of two cultures that bound together will never let you fall too far from love, stray too far from grace, the will teach you that every things that makes you less like them, makes you more like us, and together we are strong. You will always be our little princess.

I have faith that you will learn to see the beauty in a world that seems forgotten here, a world that had enough magic to craft your grandmothers smile. She still holds that magic in her tongue, so listen when she sings the songs that have preserved that world for me. I’ve been fighting to hold to the murmuring beat of legacy, I’m always hoping you grow to know the things I have forgotten. I hold but a few relics from the culture that raised me, I wanted to gift them all to you, maybe you could have worn my mothers name.

Instead of naming you in readiness for the diaspora, embellishing your name with trinkets of Africa, I could ready you for this one life the best I can. Together we can sit back and name this world in the spirit of  compassion and freedom. There is power in a name, so my promise to you is that I will take care in naming this world with you, for you, so every avenue is a door to being the blessing you have been sent to be.That murmuring beat of grace was never fading fortitude but growing power. From your crowning moment you were destined to be the queen of our hearts. A rose by any name will still smell as sweet, so let’s nurture your Eden and feed your petals grace.

With Faith at heart and Hope at heart, I’ll see you when you get here. This world is ours to take.

 

 

 

Treason


He watched his miracle curdle in the grooves of his palm. To have and to hold had grown sour the moment he decided to hold onto his ill intentions.

His lips, stained with sin, hung heavy and full of fear, he couldn’t help but sit soundless and still. The words he searched for dissolved into puddles of regret.  He had forgotten his senses, he had wondered for far too long and only wandered into his own nightmare. Sleepless will this mans mind grow with each day. A guilty man knows no rest lest his mind find justice.

It was behind a smile that his undoing sprouted wings. A smile, brandished so sweetly, walked into life holding the key to his misery. How was she to know she was a volatile tonic, prying open a mind wild with the perennial plague of unlived yesterdays. A hollow void of thoughts that when roused, seemed more than ready to unravel the bedrock of his conscience. She wasn’t conscious of the man behind the empty smile, all laughter and merriment, she was unaware of the dissolution of harmony.

An innocent taste of the possibilities seemed tangible in her words. She draped her cares loosely around her tongue, talking in tones that craved company into the thick night. He felt certain to be safe from the prying eyes of his sensibility. It was a night of secret escapes, played in the key of greed and strummed on the cobbled streets of a crumbling kingdom.

His climbing back into sense was not enough to fight off the stench of treason. It hung close to him, it followed him as he walked. When his stint with sin was spent, his face was a wasted shade of an oath he had taken at an alter, man and wife now strangers. Matrimony, once making kingdoms whole, when broken leaves holes in a frayed fabric of trust. Insecurity, fear , resentment, these are the relics of his twisted fantasy, the shackles that hold him prisoner to his guilt, the execution that hold his as ward over his purgatory.
Where do sinners go when they die?

When dreams are stolen, when trust is broken, when the blood of a promise runs thick, where does the jury convene? Maybe justice can settle the heart, for a guilty man knows no rest lest his mind finds justice.

 

 

Him for Her

There was a cruel miscarriage of justice written in ash and embers. The amber glow of spent vigour twisted the vines that once hugged the old tree. Once brilliant with chlorophyll and teaming with life, the luminous veins were the symbol of a hope that lived before the sky summoned it’s executioner. Now ashen and frail they lay strewn amongst the blades of grass, robbed of vitality, bearing no semblance to there original beauty.

From the speckled screen of privilege, I was kept safe at a distance, watching the ruckus unfold. The storm would rile itself up with that thunderous call and response that claimed the stormy nights. The room would shake as the air, taught by the rain and imposing clouds, was cut clean by the limbs of lights that stretched down. Outside my looking pane, out of reach of the reality of it all, nature was claiming its dominion over nature. My mother told me that lightning never strikes the same place twice. I’ve heard the words repeated time and time again, now looking on at the remains of the old tree, smitten by the sky, I prayed the heavens would spare that patch of earth another bout of fury.

I can’t remember when it was that I stopped running from those thunderous claps. I never took note of the way the fear molded itself into fascination. I out grew the cowering and faced into the storm from the safety of my window. A veil clear enough to never hide whats there to see, but veil enough to to ensure I didn’t taste the sting of the moment.

The elements wear their emotions on there sleeves, never resigning themselves to the judgment of onlookers. The thunder has been praised and vilified, none of this had altered its readiness to do its bidding. Staring at the remains of the old tree I see that beauty has hidden bite, nature has hidden might, the sharp sparks of heaven could strike as marvelous, or touch upon earth with ugly hues of destruction. There is a pantomime of ether that will wind to unfold in unexpected endings, in unexpected beginnings, unexpected majesty and mourning.

 

 

There was a cruel a miscarriage of justice written in ash and embers. The amber glow of unchecked rage, rattled off in storms that ate away at her. Such jagged diction, then taken as norm, was gifted thoughtlessly until they touched on the sinews of that lone soul brave enough to stand tall in the open, weathering the storms.

I hate that I wasn’t the only one watching as another cloudy day claimed her smile as the hope that coursed her veins was claimed by thunder. Her voice was lost in the wash of a horse wind begging her to “Remember her place.”

“What place?” I thought.

Sadly I knew.

There are only so many storm that privilege can shelter me away from. With out the rain on my back I’m numb to the reality of the stand, I forfeit forever my watching post.

My sister. I will be counted in the forest that will grow around you. I will be there to stand by you when the world is all raindrops and fire. I will stand tall, rooted deeply, footing firm and far reaching so every storm will tread tentatively before washing the ground around you. She fights for her right to stand tall in the bitter air. She stands tall to outlive the roar of the witless lumberjacks chains, intent on binding her strength. I have watched those branches tapped for way too long, limbs leaking with majesty, bleeding your sustenance dry. Your crooked bark outlines the story that was written in silence, the broken Armour that recounts the nights fighting against the storm.

When the sky is all raindrops and fire, I promise to stand with you.

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 3: Acrostic – Trust

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Another day in the world of WordPress has provided another glorious opportunity to fine tune our art of expression, Writing 201, challenge number 3 is in play. The poetic form we have been given to play with today is “Acrostic”, spelling out a word, or words with the first letters of each line of our poem. The optional devise we can make used of today is the internal rhyme, and finally the prompt. Our poems have the option of addressing the topic trust, in any manner we see fit. This is my contribution. Enjoy!

Momentary truths are tested against forever,

Afflictions of affection, feeding a foul weather.

Summers of sweet escapes and serenading amore,

Quiver in moors, stagnant, stripped of any allure.

Unravelling vales falling, raising a stale wall,

Elaborate tales told, unfold to exhale all.

Roaring flames spasming, eating away the frame,

Attacking the strokes painted by pain of a known name.

Deceit is a small game in the dance of hidden intention,

Evading the truth for gain, only maims future ascension.

Notes from Paranoia: Trust!!

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“Follow your heart they say, Use your head they say. Adding no direction the blind spiral, only in an attempt to sound like they helped!”

My mind and my heart love to play games, they indulge in a pentathlon of give and takes. On the looping itinerary I see the classics, tug of war, hide and seek and explosive bouts that last for seemingly infinite rounds. As destructive as they can be, the rubble the ruckus leaves behind serves as perfect tinder to keep the fires of my curiosity burning. The ambient question mark hooks me with curiosity, which burns bright as I hunger for answers. Trust is on the menu today. Today, like many other days, it’s unknowingly pirouetting on the spit as I chew on the concept. However, my hunger to know, knows no nourishment yet.

What is trust?

PARANOIA

“Trust means blunting my blade. Trust is ailing my dependency on me. Trust ignores the strange faces and is lax with the loose lips that leak lies and disguise truth. It’s putting a piece of me in some else’s hand and hoping they are sure footed. Hoping there going where they said there going, to do the things they said they would do and not barter away the piece of me I placed into their hands and waved off.”

Real trust is hard to earn, it’s not the sole purpose of an interaction but definitely enriches it’s quality. We always have an opportunity to deposit a little more trust into ever growing relationships. Trust can be built up, but will always fall short of absolute. This isn’t to spite the few you hold close, it’s quite the opposite. This bottomless reservoir plays in their favour, as it’s always provides room for more trust, new levels to ascend to in the wonderful and weird world of relationships, plutonic and otherwise.

Sadly, every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Trust can be lost, at far greater speeds than it takes to build it up. It happens and unfortunately we see it, sometimes you see someone bring their trust into the frame and it’s a weary vision. Tattered and plagued with patches, stitched firmly on with sweet and sour threads of hope and anger. The picture is subtle but there to be seen. Telling so much about a person but yet giving away so little. In the perfect world, badly placed trust wouldn’t be an issue, but bad investment are very much alive as this high risk, high reward aspect of living plays a leading role in the tale of interpersonal relations.

“I can’t tell you who to trust and why, I cant feed stock to this concept when the winters of cold hearts have left you brittle, shoulders chipped and wondering “why?” . You’ve been unduly introduced to a reality where altruism, is an untrue “ism”. Where it makes sense that if self preservation is too imprinted in human nature, the well being of another is surely an after thought…”

As I look at trust, Turning it this way and that, tirelessly hoping to learn, I fail. The same part of me that feeds trust life, obscures it to my logic. The emotions, the reasoning, the never ending ballet of heart and mind. Depending on the day, trust looks very different to me. I see this familiar stranger and know I can both trust and distrust, out of respect. I’ve seen what you can do!!!

,

FIRE

December! Your stretch is drenched in a bitter stench!!

Frost and fermented fun, run course through your trench

I cower and quiver, besieged by the winters breathe

My patience for her whispers whimper to a splinters breadth

So I’m Befriending her enemy, warm, vivid and bold

A flickering fire, she finds means to limit the cold.

Teasing my every senses as she dances in place

The beautiful smell, sound, taste, warmth on my face

I watched the dancing amber’s in her house full of red

A spectrum of anger gifting them a comfort filled bed.

Misunderstood and abused, she lends herself to be used

Lacking direction, flicking wildly, I too am confused.

A pocket of warmth nestles these rebellious stones

A furnace for fine destruction, its pure power alone.

A straying few alone can lend distraction a home,

Ignorantly lit, the flames seductively moans.

Inviting, but protective, she doesn’t want me so near

Knowledge of her is obtuse and lends so rightly to fear.

Its light, a mere distraction from the beautiful feast

Visual deception, from the carnage at peace

My open palms stray wanting, such an ignorant lust

Naive humanity forges fire with gullible trust.

“Man invented fire”, how pompous and bold

Claiming to tame that element that saved from the cold

Natural and wild, beautiful but fierce

Even the darkest cloak will appease to be pierced.

Paving mans arrogance, just goading the gloat

The genesis of “genius” is suspended afloat.

Man invented the wheel, but we stumbled on fire!

She entertains our trust, such a humble desire

Her tantrums can claim lives, even level a fort

Devious minds of men merely embezzled a force.

She understands my respects and teases my skin

Against Decembers rugged touch, were achieving a win!