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FEAR FALLS | Ahmadu Usman Ode


A pale page 
carrying questions 
Across the Nile, 
in search of grief
Planted on fertile famine,
Before our daughters sang 
Sour songs along the pathway —
While they walk with their ears to
Dump their anxiety in the bank of
Benue, where their clay pots drink
The life that runs in its stretch marks.

While their hearts grow through their necks- as 
They seek freedom in the womb of fears,
Answers to their questions fall
Like harmattan rains.

Upon this land where grief grows;
Goats chase lions, lions eat grass,
Lions cast cracks on creeks
With cranks and crafts of a fertile grief 
While corpses lie in the rain like Rwanda's dark pride.

We grew here;
Where herbs hurt herds and
Cure only the sins of our
Ancestral sciences. As we
Became slaves digging our old graves-
Where underdevelopment seems
To spread its mat of harshness
Upon roofs. And we, proud lions bowing to goats became.


Ahmadu Usman Ode writes under the pseudonym 'PoetiQue' and Odu Ode. He is from Nasarawa State, Nigeria. The vice president of creative writers association in Nasarawa State University.

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By those big lions
For whatever they chase,
They make sure is no longer breathing
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