NAIJA POETRY 17: Say Me A Prayer

If in my sleep tonight I cut the ropes
And hear not the bell that wakes the day
Say me a prayer
That all may carry my songs to dark
Corners and sing light to their sight.
That the dusts which gather at my feet may
Paint pious portraits on all walls.

Say me a prayer
That my hands may once again feel
the warmth of garlanded pens.
That my fingers may never forget the bond
They shared with white and black keys.
That the strings of my guitar may guard their
tunefulness to serenade celestial beings.

You who war against awful memories
Flying the flag of time’s rotten toes,
How does your fight pacify wailing bloods?

Those who are gone are bade farewell and presented
Prayers as gifts; their routes to spirit lands are free of thorns.
Over there, they sit atop sacrifices and feast on libations.
When my ancestors send signs
Say me a prayer
That the paths which I shall cross be laced with roses.

AUTHOREchezonachukwu Chinedu Nduka; born in Onitsha Town of  Anambra State, Nigeria, 0n Wednesday 19 July 1989.


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