a poem by John Chika Onyeme, Nigeria

Death has a face
Like the bark of a black walnut,
Devoid of grace
Devoid of smiles and laughs.

Death has no tongue
And no eyes.
He has no peace
No forgiveness
No mercy
No home
No pets
No breath
No life.

Death walks about
Prowling like a starving tiger.
Desperate like a virus
Ancient slaughterer

His palms are dried
Black and heavy and bristly
His In protruding spine, corrugated,
Looks like the tail of a crocodile.
His triceps and biceps are bulky
Like those of a primitive wrestler

His heart is like a desert
Empty, infinitive, hot, bare
His eyes are feline
His jaws are leonine
His deeds are fraught with bloods
His bod jagged with squillions of scars
And tattoos of innocent children,
Helpless women and gentle men,
He wears rags he's made from the dead's dreams
And talents and hopes.
And enveloping is mien is a miasma
Of decay and the effluvium of a cesspit

His demeanour alone crushes his
Prospective preys with fear and
Munch on their arrogance.
He has no order or preference.
He leaves his the traces of
His presence with burnings and ashes.

Ruins are his shadows,
Darkness, tears and dusts
And grieves and wailings
And illness and weakness
Confusion and illusion

He putrefy every viability
And leaves the living
In the shackles of dust
He's the beast hunted in vain
From the beginning of time.

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