The GatheringBy Emmanuel Uweru Okoh
Now I ask...
What do you see?
Eyes with shades of variedness
Eyes of diverse vision
A hundred feet in this room
A hundred minds that stand differently
Multiple petals as ears all listening to me
But what do you hear?
Would you hold these words against me?
These "ordinary" utterances I fear would hunt me.
That hunt I see close to the finish line...
Must it hurt when we see the finish line?
Would you strike me with the rod of my deeds?
Those "ordinary" deeds we thought were innocuous...
Mere antics of a playful mind
Even as you cheer at my words,
The words etched on your hearts are "uncheerful"
Now I quiver, for there is no known tale of perfect pretense.
Spare me a while of being me.
This script I play has become me
Like a sad song on a loop.
Spare me a while of your genuine self
That this smile I see belongs to a smiling heart.
Now I ask again...
What do you see when you look at me?
Emmanuel Uweru Okoh, a poet and writer was born in Nigeria. His works have been published in NEXT, Saraba magazine and Sentinel Nigeria. A few others are ITCH Magazine of South Africa and Mad Hatters’ Review of Iceland.