Spotlighting Pan-African Poetry

Biography

Street Medley

Enlarge poem

The streets have you on crosshairs, daring you to cross here
We riding hard like Con-Air, hold on to your bus-fare
Cut corners on top-gear, survival here is warfare
Tramps from all frontiers will pierce your heart with hot-spears
Apongbon is for rough-necks, area boys eyeing your church-gear
They need some dough and draw near, play smart, don’t be a hot-head
Their guns don’t have a license so don’t expect some kindness
It’s one moment of silence for monumental violence
Queuing up at mortuaries where they stack corpses like dollar bills
Life is on the contrary, they cross you out like corner-kicks
The boys are high on paraga with thick moustache like Samanja
And dark goggles like Abacha coming down your verranda
Intellectual manikin sipping on your Heineken
You checked out what they trafficking they’ve come for you u’re panicking
Blood all over the wall, someone’s cracking up your skull
Grief engulfs the family

Oregun graduates of remand homes
Swimming in murky waters like tadpoles
Madder than blokes from Aro,
Won a ko’gbo si e lapo
Stick you to the ground like flag-poles; and chew you out like pako
Fed up with so many dashed hopes, No reprieve for their dark souls
Won o npe k’on to pago, they won’t join you to break bread
But won’t hesitate to break heads, Daddy wasn’t there to raise them;
(he) left them for the garage 2 shape them,
You worked so hard to make ends, meet and reward your patience
Took a car loan at a high interest rate,
There’s an ambush on d interstate
Someone is dying intestate,
The probate’s getting intimate
B/4 they put you into d soil, d family swoops on your toil
Scoop all your spoil; kick your kids to the kerb

Who will bring hope to the streets give them a home and reprieve
Do a re-mould and re-think b/4 they’re roped and they killed
Too many blokes get deceased and plunge their folks into grief
I see them grope in the pit down in the hole of defeat
They can’t make dough from Frank Edoho
Under pressure so they groan like Ras Kimono
They can’t go to king’s college all they have is street knowledge
Mastered d craft as pick-pockets living on the fast lane
Believing that crime pays till the very day they kick-buckets
They need God and seek knowledge to save their souls from deep torment
You grab the mic n spit nonsense at d time ur mouth should teach knowledge
They need you but you fear them they’re too much for your intelligence
Ignore them to your detriment, but love can make them penitent
They’ve had too much of negligence so they’re running out of sentiments
Go on your knees for the delinquents that myth will bow to evidence
Touching them is no sacrilege share some joy and happiness

Jeff Plumbline

Featured Poem:

Before the Bronx

Enlarge poem

Hip hop came before the Bronx
Didn’t have a name but it had a form
Ijala and ewi over the talking drum
Will leave you all craving, begging for more
When hunters battle rapped, Ijala was born
Ewi the epic rhyme had you chanting along
Deep within our hearts there was a longing for God
We felt He was too far Edumare was pawned
For the deities and demons that were baying for blood
Cattle were sacrificed, we were playing along
They weren’t satisfied, thy demanded our sons
Art form, transformed by bad blood
Became the platform that fuelled the backdrop
Of the horror and the torture from inter-tribe wars
They sold us as slaves but we went with our song
Padlocked our lips but we still had a voice

Who said they taught us democracy?
We had it way back since the Oyo-mesi
Hmmmn…Oro Pesi
The Ayan was the DJ and his talking drums the MC
Along with seven councilors regulating autocracies
Oba to ba buru won ma nsi’gba fun ko lo ku
An empty calabash given as present to tyrants
Implied suicide, the king became his hangman
We also had our own three-tiers of government
The Oba, Olori-Ile, and in the middle the Baale
In Berlin they shared us in absentia
Deliberated our destinies but we were not there
Turned us to colonies, well God forgive them
Superior hominids, the way we view them
Don’t be fooled Sir, all men are equal
Put a cut on any man, what’s d colour of his serum?

The songs of our fathers always had a meaning
Regardless of the side that the crowd was leaning
With our art and our craft, we desired to see Him
We had the ileke in the place of bling-bling
Our forebears break-danced to the beats of bata
But now all we know is “shake it like that”
Whatever in the world happened to our psyche?
Break dance was banned by Raji-Rasaki
They tried to stop a movement in its rapid advances
Hip-hop had re-awakened in the 70’s Bronx
In our boarding school in the ‘80s, the news came to us
Dancing and flashing torches we scratched lockers with coins
To that African generation hip-hop was returned
African hip-hop is restating the obvious
It started from here, throw away your assumptions!

How does this featured poem make you feel?

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  • Inspiration (0)
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  • Peace (0)
  • Amusement (0)
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  • Hope (0)
  • Sadness (0)
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Biography

Poet, songwriter, political blogger (rantingsofthetalakawa.blogspot.com) and Hip Hop Rap/spoken word artist Plumbline was born in Lagos Nigeria, in his Lagos Island hometown.

Growing up, he was influenced by local poets like the late Mamman Vatsa and later on caught up with the works of the Late Ken Saro Wiwa.

His defining moment was when he heard Kurtis Blow’s Basketball and If I ruled the World in the Early/Mid Eighties. Having been on Michael Jackson’s pop and Boney M’s Discotheque, this was to him a paradigm shift. By the time he was in high school, he started writing his own rhymes but did not go into active recording till 2006/2007, the time he concluded his Masters Degree in Applied Geophysics, five years after a first Degree in Geology.

He is a regular spoken word performer at Taruwa, Lydia Sobogun’s Poetry/Open Mic event hosted by Bez with a fiery delivery that earned him the title Taruwa Favourite. He performs at Anthill, and hosts a Spoken Word event, Chill and Relax at Life House, Sinari Daranijo, Victoria Island. He was also one of the Poets at Rhyme and Reasons for Jos, a gathering of Artists and Comedians to decry the Jos violence.

He has since teamed up with BigFoot (Micworx), Kraft (Kraftwork), and Steady of STOMProductions on an ambitious Hiphop/Spoken Word project.

Jeff Plumbline

Biography

Poet, songwriter, political blogger (rantingsofthetalakawa.blogspot.com) and Hip Hop Rap/spoken word artist Plumbline was born in Lagos Nigeria, in his Lagos Island hometown.

Growing up, he was influenced by local poets like the late Mamman Vatsa and later on caught up with the works of the Late Ken Saro Wiwa.

His defining moment was when he heard Kurtis Blow’s Basketball and If I ruled the World in the Early/Mid Eighties. Having been on Michael Jackson’s pop and Boney M’s Discotheque, this was to him a paradigm shift. By the time he was in high school, he started writing his own rhymes but did not go into active recording till 2006/2007, the time he concluded his Masters Degree in Applied Geophysics, five years after a first Degree in Geology.

He is a regular spoken word performer at Taruwa, Lydia Sobogun’s Poetry/Open Mic event hosted by Bez with a fiery delivery that earned him the title Taruwa Favourite. He performs at Anthill, and hosts a Spoken Word event, Chill and Relax at Life House, Sinari Daranijo, Victoria Island. He was also one of the Poets at Rhyme and Reasons for Jos, a gathering of Artists and Comedians to decry the Jos violence.

He has since teamed up with BigFoot (Micworx), Kraft (Kraftwork), and Steady of STOMProductions on an ambitious Hiphop/Spoken Word project.

Street Medley

Enlarge poem

The streets have you on crosshairs, daring you to cross here
We riding hard like Con-Air, hold on to your bus-fare
Cut corners on top-gear, survival here is warfare
Tramps from all frontiers will pierce your heart with hot-spears
Apongbon is for rough-necks, area boys eyeing your church-gear
They need some dough and draw near, play smart, don’t be a hot-head
Their guns don’t have a license so don’t expect some kindness
It’s one moment of silence for monumental violence
Queuing up at mortuaries where they stack corpses like dollar bills
Life is on the contrary, they cross you out like corner-kicks
The boys are high on paraga with thick moustache like Samanja
And dark goggles like Abacha coming down your verranda
Intellectual manikin sipping on your Heineken
You checked out what they trafficking they’ve come for you u’re panicking
Blood all over the wall, someone’s cracking up your skull
Grief engulfs the family

Oregun graduates of remand homes
Swimming in murky waters like tadpoles
Madder than blokes from Aro,
Won a ko’gbo si e lapo
Stick you to the ground like flag-poles; and chew you out like pako
Fed up with so many dashed hopes, No reprieve for their dark souls
Won o npe k’on to pago, they won’t join you to break bread
But won’t hesitate to break heads, Daddy wasn’t there to raise them;
(he) left them for the garage 2 shape them,
You worked so hard to make ends, meet and reward your patience
Took a car loan at a high interest rate,
There’s an ambush on d interstate
Someone is dying intestate,
The probate’s getting intimate
B/4 they put you into d soil, d family swoops on your toil
Scoop all your spoil; kick your kids to the kerb

Who will bring hope to the streets give them a home and reprieve
Do a re-mould and re-think b/4 they’re roped and they killed
Too many blokes get deceased and plunge their folks into grief
I see them grope in the pit down in the hole of defeat
They can’t make dough from Frank Edoho
Under pressure so they groan like Ras Kimono
They can’t go to king’s college all they have is street knowledge
Mastered d craft as pick-pockets living on the fast lane
Believing that crime pays till the very day they kick-buckets
They need God and seek knowledge to save their souls from deep torment
You grab the mic n spit nonsense at d time ur mouth should teach knowledge
They need you but you fear them they’re too much for your intelligence
Ignore them to your detriment, but love can make them penitent
They’ve had too much of negligence so they’re running out of sentiments
Go on your knees for the delinquents that myth will bow to evidence
Touching them is no sacrilege share some joy and happiness

Featured Poem:

Before the Bronx

Enlarge poem

Hip hop came before the Bronx
Didn’t have a name but it had a form
Ijala and ewi over the talking drum
Will leave you all craving, begging for more
When hunters battle rapped, Ijala was born
Ewi the epic rhyme had you chanting along
Deep within our hearts there was a longing for God
We felt He was too far Edumare was pawned
For the deities and demons that were baying for blood
Cattle were sacrificed, we were playing along
They weren’t satisfied, thy demanded our sons
Art form, transformed by bad blood
Became the platform that fuelled the backdrop
Of the horror and the torture from inter-tribe wars
They sold us as slaves but we went with our song
Padlocked our lips but we still had a voice

Who said they taught us democracy?
We had it way back since the Oyo-mesi
Hmmmn…Oro Pesi
The Ayan was the DJ and his talking drums the MC
Along with seven councilors regulating autocracies
Oba to ba buru won ma nsi’gba fun ko lo ku
An empty calabash given as present to tyrants
Implied suicide, the king became his hangman
We also had our own three-tiers of government
The Oba, Olori-Ile, and in the middle the Baale
In Berlin they shared us in absentia
Deliberated our destinies but we were not there
Turned us to colonies, well God forgive them
Superior hominids, the way we view them
Don’t be fooled Sir, all men are equal
Put a cut on any man, what’s d colour of his serum?

The songs of our fathers always had a meaning
Regardless of the side that the crowd was leaning
With our art and our craft, we desired to see Him
We had the ileke in the place of bling-bling
Our forebears break-danced to the beats of bata
But now all we know is “shake it like that”
Whatever in the world happened to our psyche?
Break dance was banned by Raji-Rasaki
They tried to stop a movement in its rapid advances
Hip-hop had re-awakened in the 70’s Bronx
In our boarding school in the ‘80s, the news came to us
Dancing and flashing torches we scratched lockers with coins
To that African generation hip-hop was returned
African hip-hop is restating the obvious
It started from here, throw away your assumptions!

How does this featured poem make you feel?

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

Street Medley

Enlarge poem

The streets have you on crosshairs, daring you to cross here
We riding hard like Con-Air, hold on to your bus-fare
Cut corners on top-gear, survival here is warfare
Tramps from all frontiers will pierce your heart with hot-spears
Apongbon is for rough-necks, area boys eyeing your church-gear
They need some dough and draw near, play smart, don’t be a hot-head
Their guns don’t have a license so don’t expect some kindness
It’s one moment of silence for monumental violence
Queuing up at mortuaries where they stack corpses like dollar bills
Life is on the contrary, they cross you out like corner-kicks
The boys are high on paraga with thick moustache like Samanja
And dark goggles like Abacha coming down your verranda
Intellectual manikin sipping on your Heineken
You checked out what they trafficking they’ve come for you u’re panicking
Blood all over the wall, someone’s cracking up your skull
Grief engulfs the family

Oregun graduates of remand homes
Swimming in murky waters like tadpoles
Madder than blokes from Aro,
Won a ko’gbo si e lapo
Stick you to the ground like flag-poles; and chew you out like pako
Fed up with so many dashed hopes, No reprieve for their dark souls
Won o npe k’on to pago, they won’t join you to break bread
But won’t hesitate to break heads, Daddy wasn’t there to raise them;
(he) left them for the garage 2 shape them,
You worked so hard to make ends, meet and reward your patience
Took a car loan at a high interest rate,
There’s an ambush on d interstate
Someone is dying intestate,
The probate’s getting intimate
B/4 they put you into d soil, d family swoops on your toil
Scoop all your spoil; kick your kids to the kerb

Who will bring hope to the streets give them a home and reprieve
Do a re-mould and re-think b/4 they’re roped and they killed
Too many blokes get deceased and plunge their folks into grief
I see them grope in the pit down in the hole of defeat
They can’t make dough from Frank Edoho
Under pressure so they groan like Ras Kimono
They can’t go to king’s college all they have is street knowledge
Mastered d craft as pick-pockets living on the fast lane
Believing that crime pays till the very day they kick-buckets
They need God and seek knowledge to save their souls from deep torment
You grab the mic n spit nonsense at d time ur mouth should teach knowledge
They need you but you fear them they’re too much for your intelligence
Ignore them to your detriment, but love can make them penitent
They’ve had too much of negligence so they’re running out of sentiments
Go on your knees for the delinquents that myth will bow to evidence
Touching them is no sacrilege share some joy and happiness

Comments

Your email address will not be published.