Spotlighting Pan-African Poetry

Biography

For Gaza

Enlarge poem

Stranger, warmth returned to the pink
of your palm, slide your fingers over my lips,
a sealed love letter in a bottle.

Secrets are really just in search of an
ear to crawl home. The flower to your hearts
darling bud that opens up like a novel.

We douse our faces with ash, a sacred rite
of benevolent smear we dab behind our ears. The wind
blows it gone. I can’t help but wonder, is this

love ends? In my cab, I watched your fingers lick
the mist-covered window as a caligrahper’s pen
drawing escape plans to Mecca. My eyes so full

questions. We drove past the lamp posts and trees
that lean with life each nest a child strapped to a mother’s
back.The birds singing to lull their young asleep.

You no longer need to hide the cars,
Palestine, Gaza sits as wound across
The strip of flesh between your breasts

You veil in your hijab.

We burn some rain on your toungue.
Your mouth a mosaic cut of glass, a
goblet to catch sunshine as a pail atop

your head that empties when we kiss.

You said out loud enough to browbeat
The neighbours, “This is not Islam”.
But I took you in my arms anyways.

We cannot argue with grace. When god
sobs, there is nothing haram in the way you claw
at your thighs to draw out blood.

The sand clings to my eyes:blind; I see not.
My ears stopped, to harvest sound. We disperse as dust.
The street spilt. Gasoline spilt on the tarred path.

We rush to drink the tarnished milk as blood
We sop with bread. There is no promise of communion
here, Egypt we are dying, Egypt we are dying

O Alexandria!

By badawi caravan we have seen the tumble
weed tussling the arid savannah at dark
and know now how it feels to be forgotten.
What a strange and yet common song?

I call your name in tongues the darkness swallows
whole. I am just a broken throat. I know you have
heard this old song before when we watched

the stars scratch light unto a blackboard
and felt… foolish. When was the last time
we put aside our differences and scuffled

for the moon? Upon pulse of morning, you wait
for the first kiss of dawn as chaste leaf. The sun
has always been your lover. Become sand with me.

I will love you everywhere.

My tears mere atoms over Hiroshima I smear on your
skin as on ocean washes the feet of shore. I am yours
to slave labour, tilt the sand, pick the crop and bear

children in the gross. Salt the sweat that breaks from
my spine and serve it over pounded yam. We will dine
in silence. My blood but sap to feed the future

nestled in your womb. Judea will need sons.
Seeds to lead us unto the grain again where will meet
At feet of Galilee, walk the Jordan, and this time drown
Without a fight. Today’s news costs money but tomorrow
It will be free.

Gomolemo Motsamai

Featured Poem:

Sonar Poem

Enlarge poem

It’s been hard, lately, the writing. Entire nights
spent alone as though loose change
Tossed inside a stranger’s cup. A part of you dies unable to wake
Up and welcome the dawn as the play thing
You once loved as a child but if the sun ever shone

I don’t remember it: the days I’ve held my heart in my fist;
Both young and old enough to know time;
No longer strapped to my wrists slips through the fingers like sand.
When the hours breathe, the minutes, the go
Unnoticed and grey as a drift of silver coy-fish gargled in the navel void
of a cold water pond at night

Drowning the voice of my own songs; my face sink; absence is also sound
Crackling in the insides of my skull
like a drug addict strapped to a straitjacket with no pills nor drop of water
left in a cold cup to touch the cracked lips
of a hunger pain’s ache far from full.

gomolemo_badilisha

How does this featured poem make you feel?

  • Amazement (5)
  • Pride (2)
  • Optimism (0)
  • Anger (1)
  • Delight (1)
  • Inspiration (2)
  • Reflection (0)
  • Captivation (0)
  • Peace (1)
  • Amusement (0)
  • Sorrow (2)
  • Vigour (0)
  • Hope (0)
  • Sadness (0)
  • Fear (0)
  • Jubilation (0)

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Biography

Gomomlemo Motsamai is a Botswana based poet part of the thriving literary scene emerging in the influence of the Exodus Live Poets generation.

A regular fixture at Thapong Visual Arts Centre’s Motswrapoetry & Poets Passport: both poetry events that celebrate the growing spoken word culture in the city of Gaborone. This newly minted “upcoming” poet has performed at: the 2014 Maitisong Poetry Festival Slam; to which he was a finalist; and at the United Café III Poetry and Soul Slam Up to which he was Slam Champion.

Gomolemo Motsamai is also a resident contributor at the : a pan-africanist website aimed at the empowerment and progressive discussion of the African narrative and dissolution.

Gomolemo Motsamai

gomolemo_badilisha
gomolemo_badilisha

Biography

Gomomlemo Motsamai is a Botswana based poet part of the thriving literary scene emerging in the influence of the Exodus Live Poets generation.

A regular fixture at Thapong Visual Arts Centre’s Motswrapoetry & Poets Passport: both poetry events that celebrate the growing spoken word culture in the city of Gaborone. This newly minted “upcoming” poet has performed at: the 2014 Maitisong Poetry Festival Slam; to which he was a finalist; and at the United Café III Poetry and Soul Slam Up to which he was Slam Champion.

Gomolemo Motsamai is also a resident contributor at the : a pan-africanist website aimed at the empowerment and progressive discussion of the African narrative and dissolution.

For Gaza

Enlarge poem

Stranger, warmth returned to the pink
of your palm, slide your fingers over my lips,
a sealed love letter in a bottle.

Secrets are really just in search of an
ear to crawl home. The flower to your hearts
darling bud that opens up like a novel.

We douse our faces with ash, a sacred rite
of benevolent smear we dab behind our ears. The wind
blows it gone. I can’t help but wonder, is this

love ends? In my cab, I watched your fingers lick
the mist-covered window as a caligrahper’s pen
drawing escape plans to Mecca. My eyes so full

questions. We drove past the lamp posts and trees
that lean with life each nest a child strapped to a mother’s
back.The birds singing to lull their young asleep.

You no longer need to hide the cars,
Palestine, Gaza sits as wound across
The strip of flesh between your breasts

You veil in your hijab.

We burn some rain on your toungue.
Your mouth a mosaic cut of glass, a
goblet to catch sunshine as a pail atop

your head that empties when we kiss.

You said out loud enough to browbeat
The neighbours, “This is not Islam”.
But I took you in my arms anyways.

We cannot argue with grace. When god
sobs, there is nothing haram in the way you claw
at your thighs to draw out blood.

The sand clings to my eyes:blind; I see not.
My ears stopped, to harvest sound. We disperse as dust.
The street spilt. Gasoline spilt on the tarred path.

We rush to drink the tarnished milk as blood
We sop with bread. There is no promise of communion
here, Egypt we are dying, Egypt we are dying

O Alexandria!

By badawi caravan we have seen the tumble
weed tussling the arid savannah at dark
and know now how it feels to be forgotten.
What a strange and yet common song?

I call your name in tongues the darkness swallows
whole. I am just a broken throat. I know you have
heard this old song before when we watched

the stars scratch light unto a blackboard
and felt… foolish. When was the last time
we put aside our differences and scuffled

for the moon? Upon pulse of morning, you wait
for the first kiss of dawn as chaste leaf. The sun
has always been your lover. Become sand with me.

I will love you everywhere.

My tears mere atoms over Hiroshima I smear on your
skin as on ocean washes the feet of shore. I am yours
to slave labour, tilt the sand, pick the crop and bear

children in the gross. Salt the sweat that breaks from
my spine and serve it over pounded yam. We will dine
in silence. My blood but sap to feed the future

nestled in your womb. Judea will need sons.
Seeds to lead us unto the grain again where will meet
At feet of Galilee, walk the Jordan, and this time drown
Without a fight. Today’s news costs money but tomorrow
It will be free.

Featured Poem:

Sonar Poem

Enlarge poem

It’s been hard, lately, the writing. Entire nights
spent alone as though loose change
Tossed inside a stranger’s cup. A part of you dies unable to wake
Up and welcome the dawn as the play thing
You once loved as a child but if the sun ever shone

I don’t remember it: the days I’ve held my heart in my fist;
Both young and old enough to know time;
No longer strapped to my wrists slips through the fingers like sand.
When the hours breathe, the minutes, the go
Unnoticed and grey as a drift of silver coy-fish gargled in the navel void
of a cold water pond at night

Drowning the voice of my own songs; my face sink; absence is also sound
Crackling in the insides of my skull
like a drug addict strapped to a straitjacket with no pills nor drop of water
left in a cold cup to touch the cracked lips
of a hunger pain’s ache far from full.

How does this featured poem make you feel?

  • Amazement (5)
  • Pride (2)
  • Optimism (0)
  • Anger (1)
  • Delight (1)
  • Inspiration (2)
  • Reflection (0)
  • Captivation (0)
  • Peace (1)
  • Amusement (0)
  • Sorrow (2)
  • Vigour (0)
  • Hope (0)
  • Sadness (0)
  • Fear (0)
  • Jubilation (0)

For Gaza

Enlarge poem

Stranger, warmth returned to the pink
of your palm, slide your fingers over my lips,
a sealed love letter in a bottle.

Secrets are really just in search of an
ear to crawl home. The flower to your hearts
darling bud that opens up like a novel.

We douse our faces with ash, a sacred rite
of benevolent smear we dab behind our ears. The wind
blows it gone. I can’t help but wonder, is this

love ends? In my cab, I watched your fingers lick
the mist-covered window as a caligrahper’s pen
drawing escape plans to Mecca. My eyes so full

questions. We drove past the lamp posts and trees
that lean with life each nest a child strapped to a mother’s
back.The birds singing to lull their young asleep.

You no longer need to hide the cars,
Palestine, Gaza sits as wound across
The strip of flesh between your breasts

You veil in your hijab.

We burn some rain on your toungue.
Your mouth a mosaic cut of glass, a
goblet to catch sunshine as a pail atop

your head that empties when we kiss.

You said out loud enough to browbeat
The neighbours, “This is not Islam”.
But I took you in my arms anyways.

We cannot argue with grace. When god
sobs, there is nothing haram in the way you claw
at your thighs to draw out blood.

The sand clings to my eyes:blind; I see not.
My ears stopped, to harvest sound. We disperse as dust.
The street spilt. Gasoline spilt on the tarred path.

We rush to drink the tarnished milk as blood
We sop with bread. There is no promise of communion
here, Egypt we are dying, Egypt we are dying

O Alexandria!

By badawi caravan we have seen the tumble
weed tussling the arid savannah at dark
and know now how it feels to be forgotten.
What a strange and yet common song?

I call your name in tongues the darkness swallows
whole. I am just a broken throat. I know you have
heard this old song before when we watched

the stars scratch light unto a blackboard
and felt… foolish. When was the last time
we put aside our differences and scuffled

for the moon? Upon pulse of morning, you wait
for the first kiss of dawn as chaste leaf. The sun
has always been your lover. Become sand with me.

I will love you everywhere.

My tears mere atoms over Hiroshima I smear on your
skin as on ocean washes the feet of shore. I am yours
to slave labour, tilt the sand, pick the crop and bear

children in the gross. Salt the sweat that breaks from
my spine and serve it over pounded yam. We will dine
in silence. My blood but sap to feed the future

nestled in your womb. Judea will need sons.
Seeds to lead us unto the grain again where will meet
At feet of Galilee, walk the Jordan, and this time drown
Without a fight. Today’s news costs money but tomorrow
It will be free.

Comments

Your email address will not be published.