Poetry by Justice Gift Ogochukwu



father bless me

for i have sinned

it’s been the end of many sad songs

since my last confession,

and i accuse myself of the following sins:


my body is a casket

carrying a child’s corpse.

he begs me in the language of the past

to play in the rain,

to experience the miracle of rainbows


when it rains on me,

the drops whisper to my skin about their sadness,

about the curse of reincarnation

they tell me how they’ve flowed into many secrets

that made them the colour of sin,

how they run over guilty bodies,

bruising their innocence

before sinking into depression

till the sun boils them into ghosts

they say the rainbow is just a flashy funeral


sometimes i travel back into memories,

in search of the child i used to be,

the child who reads poems from rainbows

in search of relics of my beginnings

but only finds a sad stone


they say i’ve become a man

that men empty their eyes into their throats

and fold their lips

to hide the smoke

rising from their burning chests

but it is lightning between the teeth being a man

all i ask for is an absolution



say five ‘our father’ for your penance


go and be a child no more


Justice Gift Ogochukwu is a biochemist and lover of poetry and the arts. Though currently a student of Agricultural Economics in the University of Benin, he explores the world through the eyes of his notepad.


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