Saturday, July 18, 2015

Superhero

Dad passed away on first of July, 1995
He is my very own superhero. This poem is to his memory.


You stirred a flare for reading in me.
I recall crawling into the confines of your private library
Hounded by classics assuming names tricky to remember
Sometimes I call up images of your cloth-bound hardcovers;
‘On Aggression;’ ‘Try Anything Once;’ and ‘The Governor.’
On every first page a date underlined your peculiar signature.
I still picture you waving ‘English Without Tears’ in my view.
It’s hard to visualize I rode your backtrail without meaning to
Most amazing of all is how you honed my obsession for books
Makes me proud I was raised on books by an uneducated you.

I wish I could paint your face on cosmic canvas
Convey to the world your unique colors.
I wish I could spray your qualities over the horizon
In smoke Dad, may I do the sweet honors?
I got this feeling where my heart resides
That when we meet again away from this body
I’d have earned the privilege to look into your eyes
And say simply but firmly, “I am my father’s kid.”
Meanwhile, I hope it would delight you to know
That I have etched your face on everlasting stone.

Akpan



Monday, July 13, 2015

A Toast


I raise a toast to the man who bent the impossible to his own will;
I give a standing ovation to him who threw himself into shaping me;
I declare you a father of fathers and hoist your fame on a plinth;
I raise my glass to all you stood for; ideals taught me from the crib.

Talons of time cannot claw the memory of you off my mind.
And since you did not quit on me I return the favor in kind.
If I live four score and seven years I’ll give each moment in time
To celebrate a gift that was the sum total of divine and sublime.

Akpan



Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Phenomenal Man

My Father: The Phenomenal Man;
husband, father, uncle, brother, grandfather

I like to think of you as my very own superhero,
As the one who had my back from ground zero.
You had a charm about you it made you a special person;
A quality that set the strobe light on you lost in a crowd.
I’d love to hear the timbre of your voice while I give a listen;
The man I lost dishing the man I am the lowdown.
You commanded respect so crystal folks perceived it.
You were a gift to this world and I only wish they knew it.

I’ve always wondered what it takes
To stamp a foot in the prints you left behind.
It never fails to amaze me how you raised the stakes
When you presented the gift of your champion mind,
You had the inbuilt timing which made your moves flawless.
You knew the right words and the fact made me speechless.
You set a standard from which a young dream was launched.
You didn’t assert perfection but you gave it all your best shot.

Akpan



Friday, July 3, 2015

Sir

Sir (The name I called my father) was translated to glory
on July 1st, 1995. This poem is dedicated to him.

Sir, you…

Never said to stir up trouble;
Never said to walk away from a good fight;
Never said I wouldn’t take a tumble;
Never said change won’t rain in the nighttime.

But above all the things you said
As well as a million others left unsaid
(And it’s the greatest of all thrills),
Is that I’ll never forget how you made me feel.

Never said any worthwhile cause comes easy;
Never said it will be fine if I didn’t give it a try;
Never said to welsh on my dreams;
Never said to take my eyes off the prize.

Never said I’ll be writing this with tearful eyes;
Never said you’d be gone before this sun would rise;
Never said to see you smile again I’d go back in time;
Never said you won’t be there when I… when I…

Akpan



Wednesday, July 1, 2015

First of July

Rev. Akpan Sam Akpan
My father who I called Sir, passed away on July 1st, 1995.
This verse of poetry is dedicated to his memory.

I’d like to tell you a thing about this man I called ‘father.’
Take a seat, cross your legs yeah, make your burdens lighter.
He moved on 20 0dd years ago but still I found no other;
There’s nobody can claim my father’s place no, not ever.

Let me tell you how he gave my story a new vista.
Walk you step by step thru the genius of a master.
I really wish you met him; you’d have been bettered.
He made me the man I am so I can defeat life’s drama.

He was the kind of man who redefined ‘phenomenal.’
A man who stood by his word thru fire and thunder;
Always made time for me; he was there for my brothers.
He was a kind man who never raised his voice at Mama.

I wish you knew the story of the man I called father.
You’d battle lions wearing smiles as wide as summer.
He was the greatest of them all; a true-born soulja.
In him I found my hero, now, always and forever.

Akpan



IntShoWriMo 2015: Sign Out & Winners' Medallion

IntShoWriMo 2015 Winners' Golden Badge
Copy and paste on your site if you participated
in this year's challenge.

The guy in charge of the store where I buy my diaries asked me the second time I walked in there to grab a few more copies (less than a week to the previous date) why I still bother. One of these A4 plus size jobs ought to take a year’s jotting of all my college classes combined, he pointed out, while the rest of my collection are probably gathering dust on my bookshelf.
            “How did you figure I used them to jot down college notes,” I asked.
            Thomas, that isn’t his real name but it should do for this write-up said, “What else would you use them for, you can only have so many things worth recording in one lifetime?”
            “I write.”
He looked me, his eyes full of questions. “You’re not reselling them, are you? Cause if you are you’d be running at a loss since you’re buying at retail cost.”
            “I ain’t reselling. Besides, if I was I’d buy wholesale.”
            “Then why on God’s earth would you need so many giant-sized diaries. What do you write to demand so much blank space?” Curiosity and a trace of what passed for perplexity tinged his words.
            “Stuff,” I said. “I write stuff.” A mischievous grin played on the edge of my lips.
            “Then what do you do with your spare time. Ha! Ha! What spare time?” Then Thomas took the time to drill me on how too much writing or even reading can place the mind on the sharp edge of insanity and eventually, make it yield its control toggles to it.
            “At some point in life, everyone exhibits some form of insanity,” I said. “What you relinquish your sanity to is the payoff.” My memory of what happened next’s a little rusty but I think Thomas cracked up and I collected my stuff which, weighed a ton and made my exit.

Five years, five diaries and over five hundred thousand words later and I believe I’ve justified my insanity. Those diaries have been the archives for all my IntShoWriMo stories. And as I write this (though it’s not been easy getting my work online cause I have two left hands when it comes to typing), my total word count for an overall four years of bending my imagination to invent 30 short stories in 30 days hovers just above 200,000 words (two hundred thousand words).

I’m thinking of sending Thomas a copy of the collection when I finally gather some of these tales into book form. You know, as proof there’s a method to this madness.

            Thanks to the owners and administrators of these websites, without them I’d run short on story ideas; WritersDigest.Com, Writing.Com, CreativeWritingPrompts.Com, Reddit.Com, PW.Org.
            Thanks to the late legend Chinua Achebe, for writing the bestseller, Things Fall Apart.’ Snippets from the book added some to my prompts.
            Thanks to Stephen King (the King of Horror). I read so much of his stuff that ideas grew out of me.
            Most thanks to you whether you joined in or not for taking the time to watch me and cheer me through this fire.
            June 2016 is a date. Hope you’ll hang in there.

Keep your pens bleeding.

Eneh Akpan,
July.1st.2015