13905123574_fa5348576b_k

1
on the worst of my days
this body
is a gimcrack-vessel
no more than two lungs and
a tremor
nailed to salvaged wood

2
grief traveled with me
across the Ubangi river

i prayed love and all her cognates
on the passage over:
libet (to please)
lips (to be needed)
lyp (to beg)

i arrived with
bruised knees
wet hair
a mouth-full of salted fish

3
i am so
hungry
hungry
hungry
for holiness
for communion
for a God you can sink
your teeth into

4
i was raised on
the Congolese-gospel
i can teach you how to forget
where you’re from
to worship the wide road before you
hands open
like this:
make each palm
a letter
to the sky

5
Beni
is a town
with one police station
airport
market
many graves

i should go back
my people are weeping

6
‘home’
is a narrow bed to sleep in

 

 

**************

Post image by Monique Prater via Flickr.

About the Author:

portrait-lubalaSarah Lubala works as a Development Worker for an Education NGO in Johannesburg. When she’s not at the office, she can be found in gardens, drinking copious amounts of tea and reading Pablo Neruda’s Love Sonnets.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

4 Responses to “6 Errant Thoughts On Being a Refugee | by Sarah Lubala | African Poetry” Subscribe

  1. Hanna Ali 2017/01/17 at 03:07 #

    This is gorgeous. I hung on to every word

  2. Tina Ewokolo 2017/01/17 at 10:16 #

    How powerful. I resonated with this

  3. Anzaa 2017/01/19 at 03:02 #

    This is deep…..had to re-read

  4. gate cse results 2017/02/14 at 23:54 #

    It’s actually a nice and useful piece of info. I am happy that you shared this useful info with us.
    Please stay us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.

Leave a Reply

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Archives

I Hear a Few More Things When Bob Dylan Says ‘a Hard Rain’s a-gonna Fall’ | Chisom Okafor | Poetry

33130808452_c617d33eb3_o

My father plays a song aloud on Sundays, that begins with ‘Where’ve you been my blue-eyed girl?’ We scream on […]

The 2017 Babishai Haiku Prize Goes to Kenya’s Kariuki wa Nyamu

BABISHAI 2017 FLYER PURPLE

The 2017 Babishai Haiku Award has gone to Kenya’s Kariuki wa Nyamu for his three haikus: “last night’s rain,” “in the […]

Dreams, Remember Yesterday | Elizabeth Semende | Poetry

33431786922_b8bf038321_o

Dreams: This hole is a grave where dreams toss and turn, Touch the wind and sway with it. See the […]

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s New Short Story Is All Love, Class and Multiculturalism

adichie facebook

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s new short story in Harper’s Bazaar, a brief one titled “How Did You Feel About It?,” is all […]

Translating Guinea-Bissau’s First English-Language Novel | by Jethro Soutar

33528763244_efa32f75a1_o

In June, we brought news of the publication of the first ever novel from Guinea-Bissau to be translated into Englis.  […]

Akwaeke Emezi’s Guide to Becoming a Successful Writer in 35 Tweets

akwaekeemezi copy

Last week, Akwaeke Emezi put on her life coach cape and dished out truths that every writer, artist, dreamer, and […]