Yahaya Madu

Chronicler of the art of life.


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Mercenary

Barman, please, another beer. I am meditating.
The unforgotten sounds of gunshots in
The starry night.
For what did they die? For Nothing.
As the lie goes, the root of all things.
To become honorable and glorious carrion
For vultures
Is the patriots lot.
The dew of blood underneath trees in shadows
That a happily weeping widow
– “Sign here, for his benefits and gratuities.”-
May cash a perfumed cheque. Peace.
This the night of flowers
That in honour, diamond stones,
Decks the graveyard. Of the shiny bullet and sword.
Crucify the Son of God. Let’s have some barbacue.
Green leaves fall of fruitful trees,
To earth a sun
In eclipse.
Water rushes down the mountain rocks
To bathe a form
From the shadows of spilling blood
Not for money.
This pile of heroic dead, a feast for the pecking vultures.
How much to put a bullet in his head?
Stud his chest in the hug of fire?
You have the money?
Then let’s play.

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Tractor Engine

The wheels etch their tracks in the softness of the earth.
In the coldness of dawn
The four wheel drive, humming, suspending the plow
Is steered by hydraulic cylinders over dew kissed grass
In swimming earth
To awaken the sleeping field.
The left pedal, the clutch, shifts the gears as a foot
Gently
Presses the throttle and as the hand control lever
Gives the command for the plow’s descent
It threshes soft moistened flying earth
For the awaited burial of the seeds.
The rear differential lock is made and the slip of wheels
Is frozen
Iron elecrifying the tractors giant wheels
In equal speed.
Yes, by this diesel engine do the cattle rest
Sacred no more. For the sharp knife’s blade is now drenched in dew
And no longer in the watery rose hue from a cow that pulls the plow
In the cold of dawn. The horse also rests, still sacred.
For with the spirit of four hundred kilowatts
And five hundred horsepower
In the internal combustion engine flowing through the snaking wires
What use is the galloping hoof?
The tractor plows a moist earth blade slicing path
Wether for landscaping the grass into a green mown work of art
Or for picking the perfume of tangerines in orchards in raincloud shadows
The equipment
Corn pickers, corn planters in the golden fields
The belly mowers or front end loaders of shinning steel
Preserves the art that elecritifies the body with the ink
Of the spirit of diesel.
This auxiliary tank, like the barn after harvest
Keeps the turning wheels from the stillness of death
In the main fuel tanks expectant slumber.
At night, the thief dreams of gear box treasure,
Sell it, and taste some wine. The operator sits
In the tractors enclosed cab, hard drugs coursing
Through his veins, for how else shall the fool have rest?
From fatigue in the burial that is blessed?
The tractor engine that once over sipped ethanol
Is now a moderate drinker of diesel, and drunkard no more.
Rippling earth in the embrace of a disc harrow.
The angels are fools, know no rest, when computerized pianos have
Silenced the harps of heaven. Priest! Download sermons into an MP3
Attach it to speakers on sunday, it shall keep the audience at the altar
Spellbound. And learn from the diesel engine
What rest is the sacred cows, that once plowed in swimming earth
Over grass kissed by sparkling dew.