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C.N.P Poetry 

  • Writer's pictureCathexis Northwest Press

Confused Camaraderie

By: Ugonnaora Owoh

on my father’s blue-bulbed room   a radio plays a

Mexican immigrant track of ’05      

“ no one wants to know about heaven or      St

Pedro    or the descent of people who inherit

heaven as family achievement”

in the movie of Mexican dreams     the woman at

the train sub-track have a laughter that is clean as

water       she pulls out a $100 note        neat as her

kindness & hands a small boy whose silence is a

dead radio still mechanizing its worth        she

engineers his surprise with a tender smile

in another scene   an Iranian American woman &

her three month baby has been abducted for a

month by a taxi driver [it’s involving the FBI]

at a grocery store in San Francisco        people

gather around to witness a thief’s fate         hunger

had struck his collarbone to lift his desperation    

when he opens his mouth to speak     his voice is a

sound system hoarse from disuse             not

everyone can hear his heartbeat


Ugonnaora Owoh lives in Nigeria. His works has or are forthcoming in Existere journal (York university, Canada), Agbowo, Pangolin Review, Selene quarterly magazine or elsewhere. He is recently 2018 young romantics prize shorlist & a 2018 fowey prize recipient.

Before I got the the inspiration to write this poem, I just wanted to write about random things, things that will interest people, stories we know and do happen at times, but aside those stories, I wanted to write what matters to me and I can't be silent about. I read José Olivarez and he gave me a big insight of how poetry can make our stories feel heard. Though I wasn't American, I preferred saying things about it, to tell people, particularly Africans, that most stereotypes we have drawn about our countries are being seen in America. I chose my setting, my plot and I decided to tell this story and thank you for wanting to give the world this gift. 


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