In Praise of Onikoyi

Tell them about an unflappable warrior
A warrior both at home and on the battlefield
The bird’s offspring on Ìrókò tree
Akalamagbo’s child with magical sight
One who walks ahead

Iowa City: Early April

This morning a cat—bright orange—pawing at the one patch of new grass in the sand-and tanbark-colored leaves.

And last night the sapphire of the raccoon’s eyes in the beam of the

The War is Over

Drum of war is still and silent like coma,
Tears mob the land and rent homes apart,
The velocity of their echoes
Travelled far beyond the seas,
Our heroes, the

Angels of Hell: Canto I, Part III

A Hero Wakes
Jason Carpenter; Terry Gonzales
A slap is heard across the room,
Jarring Jason to the world of living.
“Wake up pig! Your execution’s stayed.”
Terry shouts

The Sundjata Epic

I Sundjata’s Conception

After it had happened
That Sundjata’s mother had become pregnant,
When she had been pregnant for one year,
Susu Sumanguru Baamangana’s diviners by stones said to him,

Kambili Battles Cekura

Born for a reason and learning are not the same.
Putting tradition aside for one day’s pain is not good.
Hot pepper of the Game!

The brave sat down and thought.<br

The Story of Miqdad and Mayasa

I begin with the name of the Compassionate,
and pray for the faithful one,
that I may set forth the story of that which happened long ago.

One day, Muhammad, the

Angels of Hell: Canto I, Part I

A City in Sin Burns
Las Vegas, bastion of lust; A-Day
Cars cruise down the glowing strip,
Bells, pings and whistles fill the air.
False idols croon ballads of

Angels of Hell: Canto I, Part II

All Manner of Things
Asmodeus; Lilith
With the Horsemen come a manner of beasts,
Wicked, vile, terrible things;
Well versed in bringing pain and sorrow
To princes and poppers;

Yeye Oshun

Pleasure of the night laid legs on my honeypot
To bring alive my unborn children from heaven
Groaning of the day deeper my soul into spirituality
Claw of incantation serrated

Kambili the Hunter

Kambili the hunter spoke out,
“My Father, Kanji, he said: “Yes?” the reply.
“Tell the people of the smiths,
To make some young boy’s arrows,
And, to strike a young


Odududu ndufu!
Wardrum, without whose leadership there is fear on the way!
Wardrum, without whose leadership there is fear on the way!
Great spirit, Uduma Olugutu
Great spirit, Okali husband

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