Wednesday, 21 July 2010

wole soyinka

The Hunchback of Dugbe

I wondered always where
He walked at night, or lay
Where earth might seem
Suddenly in labour when he sighed.

By day stooped at public drains
Intense at bath or washing cotton holes,
An ant’s blown load upon
A child’s entangled scrawl
The calmest nudist
Of the roadside lunatics.

The devil cam one sane night
On parole from hell, lace curtains
Sieved light dancing pebbles
On his vast creation egg

His cement mixer borne
On crossed cassava sticks.

Not in disdain, but in truth immune
From song or terror, taxi turns
And sale fuss of the mad, beyond
Ugliness or beauty, whom thought-sealing
Solemnly transfigures – the world
Spins on his spine, in still illusion.

But the bell-tower of his thin
Buttocks rings pure tones on the Dugbe
A horse penis loin to crooked knees
Side-slapping on his thighs

At night he prowls, a cask
Of silence; on his lone matrix
Pigeon eggs of light dance in and out
Of dark, and he walks in motley.

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