November 18, 2019

The Joyous Poetry of Kufre-Udeme Thompson

The Joyous Poetry of Kufre-Udeme Thompson
I Feel Like Dancing 
I woke up this morning–– 
when the night was making love with the day: 
Mbodibo all over my body! 
when the sun was about to be conceived; 
I felt my spirit yearning; my pulses ticking, 
for a thing I fought in vain to understand. 
Then just when the tiny sweet voices of birds–– 
Ebomo nkuku, kuku! 
began to escape the thick bushes behind my hut, 
resounding new songs of joy and laughter–– 
my feelings became clear as the mirror; 
I understand now my long deepest yearning: 
I really, really feel like dancing! 
The urge far surpasses the desire for a woman, 
but `tis with a woman I want to dance–– 
Nka iferi, to be precise: 
the smartest and darkest of all, 
who’ll twist to my desired feat. 
I swear, I feel like dancing! 
Play me the evil drum made with human flesh–– 
the flesh of an old woman will give a spirited rhythm; 
Ntap nkanam, ntap nkanam nkanam
Let Anansa sing me the tune–– 
Anansa, the water goddess of the Ifa Ibom nation. 
I want to dance ekombi; 
Oh, ekombi itiad ntokon! 
Let me return to the past. 
Oyebap, oyebap Bokondo! 
I want to sway with the ancient; 
Fetch me my wrapper! 
Ekombi is danced with sway clothes: 
Bend low and spin with naked feet; 
Oyebap, oyebap Bokondo! 
Fetch me the maiden; 
Play me the evil drum! 
Oh, ekombi itiad ntokon! 
I Feel Like Dancing

Kufre-Udeme Thompson, a graduate of Philosophy majoring on aesthetics, is a versatile writer of short stories, poems, and articles published in print and online reputable local and international newspapers, journals and magazines. He is currently working on his debut novel, which is a historical story about African Witchcraft, and a non-fiction work on the Holy Spirit. You can find him on Facebook and Twitter. This is his first feature on the Fictional Café.


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