Join the Neopoet online poetry workshop and community to improve as a writer, meet fellow poets, and showcase your work. Sign up, submit your poetry, and get started.

Aman Akpa

Seven times you came
Seven times you left
How we did not know?
Seven times is heartless Aman Akpa.

Seven times you've sucked our mother's breast to drought
Seven times indeed you left it sagging
Seven times is cruel Aman Akpa.

Seven times you heartlessly came toying with a home
Seven times we smiled and cackled in laughter
Seven times we jumped and told our friends we had a brother
Seven times we frown and cried that you are gone
Oh Aman Akpa!

How you would have hunt and bring meat to our table
How you would have sailed and bring fish to our kitchen
Father is old, there is no fisher nor hunter in the family
But you chose to defile our home with happiness and grief.

How many goats we've sacrificed for your birth
How many more after your deaths
Yet you kept coming and coming to go
Oh Aman Akpa!

You have made our mother old through the blood sheds at your births
You have made her a failure in the eyes of our father's people
You teased her with a son you could not be
And here again for the seventh time you lay dead in this shroud
Oh Aman Akpa!

Style / type: 
Free verse
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
What did you think of my title?
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
How was the beginning/ending of the poem?
Is the internal logic consistent?
Last few words: 
'Aman Akpa' is an Efik/Ibibio (West African) term for ''fetish child'' which can also be called 'Obanje'(Ibo) or 'Abiku' (in Yoruba). It is the African belief on wicked spirits who repeatedly come to birth not to stay but to die young and torment the family as a result of a curse or consequence for something evil...
Editing stage: 


It is always interesting to hear of another's superstitions and rites. We have many here In the United States, as this is indeed, a melting-pot of humanity. Each country brings their own to lie in bed with. I think that it is a universal superstition that one will bring a curse or consequence for bad behavior.
Your title seems apt and I like the theme. I also like the tying in of grief and laughter, as though they are both a part of the retribution for the supposed wrong. Kind of like the Asiatic theme of Yin and Yang, the eternal circle which says there can be no good without the bad, light without the darkness etc... I can appreciate the repetition of the Seven times as though it is part of a lament or prayer and
the accusations of the prayer of the seven times that this has befallen this family. The feeling of what I suspect, is the final time. ~ Nice work, Hope to see more from you. ~ Geezer.

The addition of a premium-membership can:
Help you navigate the site easier, change and create the look of your profile-page!
Just see what you can do! Add a bit of flavor to your profile and kick it up a notch!

Thanks for the encouraging comment. I hope you keep looking into my works. I'm grateful!


author comment

From the moment of birth to when we die, life presents us with dilemmas and questions that amuse, titillate and confuse us. As we get older, we realize that what we thought we knew was all pure conjecture. This poem is meant to reflect the myriad of disjointed thoughts that have run through my mind throughout the years. The "why me?" and "what is my purpose in life?" questions usually are met with ambiguity and incoherence. Many of us are beleaguered with these conceits and although some find solace in religion, for people like me it becomes an existential never ending struggle.

Mario Vitale

I'm grateful for sparing your time to look into this work. I'm encouraged


author comment

its like the voodoo we in the USA always refer to in out popular culture. You poem has a shamanistic
"stance" or presence in the poem, which is unusual.
I once took a course in tribal and primitive poetry with the great anthology maker Jerome Rothenberg (Technicians of the Sacred) and your poem would be a nice addition to that oeuvre.

I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing
than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance
ee cummings

I'm grateful! Thanks for the time employed in seeing this out


author comment

the poem is a reference to that of "wole soyinka" Abiku, i have read many of this similar poems that portrays this African believe of children that comes and go bringing their family pains in place of joy. I enjoyed reading this one
keep writing

it reminds me of a child some years past that is believed to be an "Abiku" with bangles of amulets all over her neck to resist him from going back to where he came from.
i like it.

always remember to make a critique of other poems
using the hoe is not madness for nothing

(c) No copyright is claimed by Neopoet to original member content.