I found this poem when I went on an frantic google search for Science Fiction writer, Efe Okogu. A colleague here at Duke University sent me a copy of his science fiction short story “Proposition 23.” After a paragraph, I was in love and wanted to know who this person was. Had never heard of him. But here is his first ever published poem. You know a poet is good when he can write loveliness into darkness. I’ll let you read and see for yourself. Please visit the website, Thieves’ Jargon, where Okogu’s poem was originally published. Lots of other cool stuff.
I remember her eyes and her smile;
and the electric djins that sang and danced like freed slaves
across nerve endings when she shone them at me.
I remember her skin
was the exact colour of a neon-lit dusk sky,
and she filled me with the same promise
of excitement and danger.
I remember the rush I felt
when she showed me how to cook-up yabba
and chase the red dragon into its crystal meth cave
I remember the insane all night conversations
in broken English,
Abacha and Pol Pot knife fighting in our lucid dreams;
her loose shrug and acceptance of atrocity,
her laughter at my idealistic rage
I remember saying goodbye,
wondering if her tears were real
But most of all I remember
that for the first time in my life
I paid a whore to fuck me.
Efe Okogu is a 27 year old Nigerian writer who’s spent the past five years, living, working and bumming around Asia. His short stories have been anthologized in “Diaspora City” by Arcadia books, “Chimurenga” and “Homonumos.” ‘Taxi Girl’ is his first published poem. — Thieves’ Dragon