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"peace: within" and "Parable of Two Birds" by Ayòdéjì Israel

"peace: within"

i have been stalking

peace for a while.

the bible says

there is no peace for the wicked;

i am not wicked,

i am just a pack of bones,

primed for exploit

in the soft hands of a god;

& my bod,

if heaven cares,

be clutched from the ambit of evil doers.

i have seen a family of six,


trimmed to a better size of three,

before dawn,

in my hometown.

how can you find ease in the story of a man,

clad in a sere kind of shirt,

& tall long trousers,

before dawn, and got out to finally

be lost in the stiff wind

that gulps people everyday?


heaven is to blame,

to have moulded that kind of wind

and rolled it upon us;


clogged in this heavy stream we call

a nation.

pastor says

peace is when

you, a gentle you,

born, with a wrinkled heart,

& a crinkled soul,

chats remorse,

sup it into your

gentle soul,

& hale a vast penance into

your novel heart. but i,

an embryo on earth,

hunts my mind, stares at the sky,

and find peace,

knocking, pleading,


the threshold of my heart.


Parable of Two Birds

the life of a bird is great. but i know of two birds.

friends, well, lovely like two banana trees deeply rooted

by a stream. roots strung together in the shallow streets

on the outskirts of the stream. you can see their flat long

leaves, sitting upon each other like a pan fastened

upon woods with a very long nail. such is life; but

we live like we are fastened with little nails

upon old logs. the life of these birds flourished like

the bananas–green leaves, thick bodies, short white roots

living in loamy soil. here, the birds lived for years, & built

each other's nest with each other's mouth, firm. watched

over their babies together, in their nest. when a day came,

one felt the other was having too much babies–sharp,

witty, walk like paper canoe on walking waters. &

the other, old, with eggs falling off the nest and crack

away like glass bouncing on cemented spot, sets her mind

on fire, mad at the eggs of her friend. gets up one day, goes

into the other's nest when she had flown away, sat

on her eggs–her fat rich eggs, full of energy and vigour–&

again, stands up, spat on the eggs, breaks one with

her long mouth, filled the rest in her stomach, & flown

away. coming tomorrow to whisper into the ears of

her friend: "never mind, life happens, but God

will surely do a better one."


Ayòdéjì Israel is a student at the University of Ibadan, Ibadan. He hails from Abeokuta in Nigeria. He is known for being a poet, writer, a political activist, and many other things. One of his poems is forthcoming on Kreative Diadem Magazine.

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