African poem by Yusuf Alabi Balogun

Poem : Fireman’s Jargons By Yusuf Alabi Balogun

I shed candle lights at your feet in the dark,
tremble not,
the fireplace is warm
only when stoked by my hands —
even firemen write jargons, as this.

I brew coffee on early mornings for two,
one for me, one for your shadow that lurks behind curtains,
one for your brass ears
that makes men tag the wall as a spy,
one for your eyes that trigger signals in stagnant images,
tremble not,
if it is not lunacy that men speak to a God they can’t see,
then it’s not lunacy that your face is a flashlight in darkness.

But if a man today rise
and make claims that we are cracked fireballs of some big bang, bang big some,
then normal men may be abnormal
and men in temples on Sundays might be lunatics.

If one day a man rise,
then
let me be so sick
and your love, the antidote with no other.
And if by your doorstep,
this letter clicks,
scamper not,
mine is a face you saw last night.
Our shadows are now Siamese twins,
even firemen write jargons too.

About The Writer

Yusuf Alabi Balogun, going by the stage name “Gemini” and regarded by many as “Aremo Of
Modern Yoruba Poetry” is a page and performance poet, prosaist, playwright, movie critic, radical advocate and troubadour.

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