across the moon plains, past places where light is harvested
i was cut, on the feast of stephen when stones hurled themselves,
in repetitive orbits. i had become laika, fossilized into moon rock
the grimace you see on lit nights.
sometimes i seem to ask “are you scared”?
but the reverberating silence leaves me petrified instead.
how could i not be something else?
not rock but ice, expansive unwelcoming blue,
like the depths of hell, holding secrets with centrifugal force
i spun lies on an axis into a cloth to cover the skies
and took centre stage in deception, the feast of murdered babies
holocaust, congo, biafra.
the names you call me are votive to awful natures,
metal, uranium, mushroom cloud. but the general who pushes the button?
war hero, i speak for the proliferation of human wickedness,
the sun’s ray’s not a light saber, neither the werewolf’s soul the moon’s property
butmacbeth’s luck lies in a cauldron by three witches,
enticed to downfall by loquacious ill luck
Richard Anyah lives and writes in Ibadan where he involves himself in itinerant exploration of geographies, the lives of the saints and 18th century poetics.