Award-winning poets Soonest Nathaniel, Jide Badmus, and Martins Deep are the judges for the 10th edition of the Eriata Oribhabor Poetry Prize, EOPP 2022. Over 450 entries were received for the N100,000 Prize between June and August 2022.
Say, silence bears seeds & disperses them through the garden of this body.
Say, her flowers have thorns.
Say, this body is bleeding. Say, this body’s throat is slit & parched.
and the remnants
of the orphaned rain is lying here
between our ribs, sieving the dust
trying to blur the eye’s of this
night would born.
I launch my day mixing desires in the same
bowl with uncertainties, kneading them soft
on the intricate board of complexities
And so I say, “Pilkhan”. It is not a lie, I promise. Not completely at least. There was a tree once. There were other things too, of course. A house that rested in its shade. A bunch of people who lived in it.
We travel into cobwebbed memories
to recycle our long-binned pains
into brand new Unhappiness.
O you must watch your steps
even as you pass by
& never fall in love with this poet
lest you forget your gold in his poems
Whichever road that leads us to soldier
For a land thirsty for green leaves
Makes a hero of us that never gave
Up on our fatherland.