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MY POETRY HOME — trespassers welcome
(Thursday, May 28th, 1998)
This is a piece I wrote shortly after attending the funeral of a friend's grand mother in Mopa, Kogi State of Nigeria way back in 1998. Enjoy it, and please do let me have your comments/critique about this and my other stuffs.
You should not stand at my grave
and weep or wail, for I am not there.
Do not look sad either,
and do not sing threnodies,
for none of these will be of any use now.
As for my tomb, I guess you should
simply make it shallow and drab
like a rustic Moslem grave.
Construct a tombstone for me
if you like, but make it plain,
gray and straight.
Then abbreviate my epitaph only to
a few numbered words.
I mean, you don't have to introduce
any glorifying verses therein.
Something trite and almost boring like:
"Sunrise at April 11, 1977;
Sunset at May 28, 1998"
should suffice, I think.
If any mourner wants to mourn,
let it be their funeral – do not forbid
them from mourning my exaggerated death!
Swing those ancient necropolitan gates
wide open for them to enter and mourn in silence;
for that which come close to expressing the
inexpressible after death itself is silence...
As for those bright-eyed, fine-figured and
bare-thighed lovelies to whom I had shown
some gentlemanly attentions and courtesies
during my lifetime, a serious warning:
You must not go around town telling
your friends some tall tales about
my extravagances of romance;
lest those gullible friends of yours
go to sleep with dreams of my spirit and
wake up on my grave pregnant!
Anyone that cares may heap colourful wreaths
and fragrant roses upon mine supine casket;
and anyone that wishes to do so may
light up some candles in order to
lift up their saturnine moods.
But please, let no one stand
at my grave and cry,
for I did not die – I am not there at all!
© 1998, M-Auwal Gene III. All Rights Reserved
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