Cameo In Deed – A Metric Poem by Sochukwu Ivye

Poet: Sochukwu Ivye
Bio: Sochukwu Ivye is a linguistic stylistician, a rhythmist and a distinctive metrist. A final-year student of English Language and Literature, he is particularly interested in English Language (as opposed to English Literature) topics. His work, The Great Cold, an epic poem, is the longest metrical poem by an African. Sochukwu hails from Isseke, an ancient Igbo town in Eastern Nigeria.
Editor’s remark: this work makes for a very long read, strictly for the connoisseurs.
Books in deed define your pet name for you

I well brook them for their station quite true

Do you make one thing of such depictions?

I see but made-up scenes lived like fictions

A well penned note, a far-famed actor’s role

or a gemstone, books outline, not your soul

My soul shall not rest boneless for its child,

your pet name, led and captured in the wild

Even if moments with you calmed me more

they left me, each time, with a heart of sore

Now, I should not learn why on our first day

my poor spirit caught cold under your sway

I could have seen what was in store for me,

but blindfolded, my eyes were not thus free

My mind is fraught with memories unclean,

like a frenzied boy’s eyes caught at a scene

I write to sweep my breast of your pictures,

and breathe thus freshly, eluding strictures

I should let all these saunter past my grasp

but they would dwell in me till my last gasp

As one of those all-youthful twilights came,

with mates, I sat and eased on all the same

The abrupt wind which threw in your figure

might have not longed to assess my vigour

I had found most of the street’s best ladies

I knew most but could win none or maybes

A call came; my heart and eyes led my legs,

and I went for you, although to some dregs

It did seem that I had made one cute move,

but if hours, days and years, after did prove

I heard none else, but listened for your ‘yes’

I was the leopard; you seemed as harmless

I led the thought that I had seen some gold

and beat the past, but there was the untold

There were times my feet even cried in pain

They had to take me to you, though, in vain

The first years nursed me like a newly born

Who would evoke the tales of the lovelorn?

Nothing felt frightful about how hearts halt

But, O heartache! Into wounds, you rub salt

Signs cried out to me; my senses sat numb

Omens played in my eyes; I just grew dumb

What would destroy my soul arose on time

You took no time to divulge this love-crime

How to meet your heart turned to my worry

If some thoughts met my mind, I was sorry

My warmth with you was a style of worship

To lure mates, the female display courtship

Everybody will say, “Some date themselves”

Well, who spare any hearts on any shelves?

My poise was fate-doomed: I left other girls

but because you dressed like a lot of pearls

I saw you when, at some girls else, I looked

in that all my care and lust you had hooked

My long search for the one came to an end,

but would fetch a verse I had never penned

A certain affaire caught our breaths to fare,

but no man who saw tomorrow would dare

I had to walk through some muddy love life

believing that such would win one the wife

You toyed with my rest and sullied my face,

thus that I could not lead myself with grace

Civil linguists say: no schwa, no triphthong

To merit a four-faced, what was my wrong?

My mates kept us and adorned your image,

because they were hopeful of our marriage

Friends at work, school and on the internet

did honour my Miss World and her vignette

All who wished me ill did not want you well

They won, to have met my right woman fell

You did cradle their traps to bring me down

How would I see but roam, about, a clown?

Whose only lover stabs them from behind?

Indulge me, how do they like the cut, blind?

One overreached oneself if one’s ship sank

as did mine, a short distance past the bank

I had once more begun to thrive, it seemed:

all my vows to you I could score redeemed

You well noticed how and lauded my nerve

but the base of your mind laid your reserve

To tag me new, my past knew less passion

but this foul-souled lust lent a new fashion

Your plots I did foil with some selfless acts

May I applaud your grins that read impacts

If you confessed your doubts about dating

you found me hungry for your love, waiting

I served kind judgement in will and in deed,

but saw not when I would bewail my breed

You did have my skin to breed some itches

and my waking brow to wear more stitches

I hoped that my silence smelt of most men

To your requests, my deeds echoed: Amen

You were well at it while you called me dad,

your longing and rightfully yours. How sad!

My groping heart did head for your kindred

Could it meet them in one year or hundred?

My nightmares unmasked overhanging ills,

but you dismissed them as offensive chills

To your dream men I took you, like a bridge

Who misreads you cannot repulse a midge

Except behind closed eyes, I was not yours

Until you felt hurt, past me shut your doors

You felt faceless to show me to your peers;

quick eyes saw: I was the prey all the years

I came out thus strongly despite your plots

to confess the fact: we must brave our lots

Do I miss your hugs I once scored faithful?

Or, your burning brow I did weigh graceful?

Now, for my blindness that still beheld love,

I must watch to tell the hawk from the dove

Now that yours of all lives is led four-faced,

who would still run into your likes in haste?

The eyes that see you have known a Judas

and must give heed to a snake in the grass

Knowledge is might but I loathe this lesson

Yet through you, my inner might did lessen

How you could sift nothing but rip my trust,

and ask to have it again, struck me trussed

I did pledge my trust, and met all my words;

your still small voice did fly away with birds

You had not come to plant or mend fences,

but to steal my heart and numb my senses

That ours was unknown to your confidants

blew me as my encounters with your aunts

We had struck as one, but you posed alone

scratching for wooers, moving on your own

We named our unborn, having built a home

An abode solely of steel, glass and chrome

Who builds a home and for a lifetime plans,

with a woman who does refuse her hands?

Fate struck me moneyless to clear my eyes

I saw one yet nailed downwardly crosswise

I was the one. Who could have believed all?

You did not stand me but fashioned my fall

To have dug my pit and feigned innocence,

you did shear me in deed of my sixth sense

I sought your face while I missed my wallet

If you feigned love, amounts left my pocket

Think that my ageing parent laid her health,

so that you would be with me, all by stealth

She peddled things to get me some money

You kept all and more. Were taps so runny?

If mom’s and my head abandoned your heft

you well did in deed not deem them so deft

My good mother, the marrow for my bones;

she dared all, just to build up my hormones

My eyes and mind were tried by some devil

I could not strive through but, weakly, revel

In your chasteness, the acts you titled fuss

you observed with your boys but denied us

You relished to hear but truths but well lied

You extolled me as meek but fed your pride

Your yes was but yes and your no sheer no

because your heart was a rock in the snow

I did most days bear guilts, could you ever?

All bent knees were mine, as you felt clever

The venom you fed me became some soup

Breaking out of us could not feign a swoop

I incurred more ache when you feigned pity

and shook at your plots sticking thus gritty

When I had smelt myself trapped in a maze

time past time failed me to defeat my craze

You were almost done with your fell intents

when you could pay no heed to my laments

I saw no hope as your heart failed to shake

I held my heart soft and faint for more ache

I watched us turn to walkway souls, quickly

All my labour forthwith crushed, thus sickly

I had marked the last of my love times past

but had yet to vanquish the spells you cast

Of the most foul-souled, the most silent are

If I was ruined, who would breed a memoir?

You chose Janus’ month to cast me to rout

but my God of doorways could lead me out

Could ceasing one’s life taste like a refuge?

The practice yet finds me as then and huge

I should gulp some drinks and submit inert

but something struck my dying deeply hurt

I saw my mother’s book of days half closed

In front of my heart, her face in tears posed

The dead parts of me made out of my form;

they stuck in wait for my breath to conform

Nothing else held the rest of me but mom’s

Her rheum of distress fell like barrel bombs

Had my landlord’s daughter not run to help,

who anywhere would take heed of my yelp?

Chika had but sought to succour my plight;

the whole of me, her nearness would ignite

I did predict that she would seize your seat;

having smelt your place, she called it a feat

Once again, my soul did meet one so loose

but she found me in your filth thus profuse

She would fall for a soul with no such work

and not when she had known many a quirk

She thought that I should not let you away;

I knew that she would see better, someday

She copied your looks and copied your gait

Not for her use; she is mirthful, but straight

How much more anguish did I have to feel?

Which suicide chart had I more to conceal?

For your foulness, what other grants had I?

Was there something else I did have to try?

Except you feigned them expecting returns

you had no care, but cast my balm to burns

I thought to myself that I had less strength,

if I could keep a sweetheart at arm’s length

I wondered what could render me thus foul

and shorn of wits, but now at myself scowl

I considered how tides would flow and ebb

Drowned in ill hopes, I was caught in a web

How you robbed me of my faith and reason

but filled your boys’ would rout any treason

It shook me while your voice within lay stiff

You must have killed her to enjoy your skiff

If I outlive these days, meet some soul else,

but like her less, shall we say our farewells?

While I pray that the well esteemed forgives

I fear that my scared soul beyond now lives

The leopard now mourns his meeting a linx

I could not see myself pull through this jinx

May all who follow closely mark your mode

and how you wrecked my spirits and abode

All that learn from the price that I have paid

shall meet the oncoming days, better made

I have loved. All who come after may watch

He that may wear love, my case is a swatch

Should I grow feeble and slump at this crux

all must deny more blood such state of flux

If anything slits my soul, some shame does

And through the space, I see but a dim fuzz

I howl in deed to think on these things ours

but placate my spent spirit, bearing flowers

How you could hurt and soothe like Cassio,

Shakespeare knew not the name as Cameo

Of your foul likes, our era should be cleared

to keep many from the collapse well feared

Your followers would with you be punished,

if they kept not from your path all-banished

Reap your will, get fat and gain all the world

From vivid eyes, bear your intent well furled

Win your admired and let his heart no crack

but then, may our days at no time turn back

May your breed never again know my heart,

whilst I bunch up my fragments flung apart.
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at ; his publications include
All the Babble of the Souk , Cartoon Molecules, Next Arrivals and Moon Selected Audio Textual Poems, collected poems, as well as translation of Guadalupe Grande´s La llave de niebla, as Key of Mist and the recently published Tesserae , a translation of Carmen Crespo´s Teselas.
You may visit Robin Ouzman Hislop about author. See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

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