City of Stars (Hour 3)

The city stays beaming and breathing while others sleep

it lights up on weekends

the bubble spreads like a wildfire


alcohol exhumes wild personalities tucked in all week

loud pass hands

bodies seek warmth in others

the city is alive in a high mood


Saturdays are for owambe

there’s an aunty in yellow-

her face is beat fifty shades lighter

her gele stands tall

how else do you know she has arrived-

if her aso-oke doesn’t speak hundreds of thousands of naira?

that jewelry is definitely from Dubai


she orders for amala

there must be ogunfe and big fish

those bottles of minerals would find a home in her bag


Her daughter’s waist is snatched in a corset

this is the hundredth wedding she is attending as an asoebi girl

but who is keeping count?


Sundays are holy, sabbath should be kept

those wild bodies go back to God

with gloomy faces they sit through sermons-

prepared to tuck the wildness in work pants the next day


While dawn stretches each morning, the city sits wide awake

the scorching sun rises and sets on the backs of the working class

they sit packed in buses and cars

some shirts billow on bikes avoiding the traffic jam


the city plays a game of make or break

every sojourner desires to be another star

some give up this hope early

some do not but-

“eko oni baje”


the five days of the week drag

patiently like fanatics, they wait to unleash their beasts

faithful in this religion

One thought on “City of Stars (Hour 3)

  1. So many great details! The city is a character in a poem filled with characters. Love this idea: “alcohol exhumes wild personalities tucked in all week”, this idea that alcohol raises the wild personalities buried during the week. “there‚Äôs an aunty in yellow-“, “there must be ogunfe and big fish” – exquisite, grounding details. “those wild bodies go back to God” – do they though? lol “they wait to unleash their beasts” – fantastic line in this context. Well done!

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