To be a Poem

Guest writer: Goodness Ayoola

Editor: Nada Elnady


‘You’ve convinced yourself that the primary role of a poet is that of witness, and that you’re witnessing as fervently as you can’ Patricia Smith

A poem is not first the glory of flight
It is a burden
And then you, a bird without wings
And to be a poem is epic—a journey of loss in the middle of a paradise
And your heart, i can tell, is no more yours
You are everywhere
The air is limited for the breath of your expanse
And the ground is no impediment to depths
You fly past yourself
You end the world
And at recreation, your body is another name for metaphors
Your body: a home of figures and the madness yet unknown
You are everyone: the face of the world
You do not know how you zero into hell to hello heaven
How you become music too heavy only for your tongue
How you—an answer to essence
Is this not an answer to essence?
You cry when you‘re done making beauties of the miseries of the broken
You laugh when it must be love
And sometimes you are contrasts
Or a wheel of purgation
When the flight is a plane of abstractions
You are anything
Or can be everything
Because you hold power in a pen and that is the face of freedom
You are a novel semantics
A deviated deviation
Today, the tree is water
Tomorrow, water is woman
And the world is confused how you undo words into a language of your meaning
And you are divined again
You throw a dose of paradox
Soon the world is convinced to wing the weaves of your supernatural
And by the reason of wings
When you think you can return to yourself
You don’t return.