Sometimes a poem begins with a lie
stacked-up knee-length high, atop
boxes of truth

My voice, your voice:
a derelict of love cuddled to sleep
by the furry warmth of deceit

Let’s play a flute to the past –
when we bathed in minuets of happiness;
amidst dry patches of polluted tears

Now infiltrate my soul. Puppetize me
like a guitar chained to desires
of fraying finger-tips.

I was a slave for a future cast on your heart –
of stone. A steel cage whose hinges
oiled by unsaid words and shy shadows

Today let silence strip us of pretense
and smash petals of anger
on the legitimate voice of love

Drowned by the sound of zipping jeans
that overwrite thorns and dry leaves
with high tones on jewels of lust.


That was a little lie, a forgery,
now tossed aside for the heavy boxes of truth:
an odd emotional cocktail.

For servitude is when one slaves
on a masterpiece robbed of its real value
to gain none but kitsch, unfit for the arty eye

I will switch off the lights in my life
and crouch in the darkness
to drink a cup of my tears

But I will not trace your heart-prints
nor unbind the fetters of passion
now slung on your bended back

Nor deem you a quisling unwanted
among the clouds that wage war
on my ravaged lion-heart

But dust off your stains from memory
to walk towards a new kind of love
hidden in the cusp of an uncertain world.

Richard Oduor