I’ve been writing poems since I was 16, but I rarely let anyone look at them. As time went on, I wrote less, and eventually stopped writing. I would think of a poem I should write, put down my thoughts in a notepad, and leave it at that.
Then two weekends ago, I attended Connect Nigeria’s annual Writers’ Conference and listened to Efe Paul Azino speak on writing poetry, and I realised, “You should do this, Joy. You should sit down and write the poems in your head and in your heart.”
And so I have resumed. My poems are based on my past, present and future experiences, observations and dreams.
Please read You Are Like a Brother to Me and let me know what you think. Thanks!
You Are Like a Brother to Me…
English can be such a limiting language
You may try, but my feelings you can’t gauge
By the words that I utter when you say “I love you”
By my earnest declaration, “I love you too.”
And I do love you, it’s true, you see,
But you are like a brother to me.
I know that our parents want us to be married
To each other, sweet hope they have long carried,
Since the days when we were in diapers and prams,
Watching each other from our mothers’ arms,
But I can’t see you as you see me;
You are still like a brother to me.
You’re the best friend I have, so why can’t I love you?
There has never been a time when I did not know you,
And I want to love you, to respond to your passion
But my heart and body fail, there’s just no reaction.
Why can’t you feel it? Why can’t you see,
And accept that you are a brother to me?
There are days when I wonder, this man I will marry
When he comes, will he truly be extraordinary?
Will he be more handsome, or more loyal than you?
I’m tired. Why can’t I just fall in love with you?
At least then I won’t have to make you agree,
That you’ll never be more than a brother to me
The deep caring I feel for you cannot compare
To the love that a husband and wife should share;
You say that love is a seed that grows,
I agree, but isn’t it also a spark that shows?
If I agreed to marry you, how fair would it be,
When you’re only a dear brother to me?
I feel bound by these sisterly emotions,
Tempted to marry and go through the motions.
I wish that I could just find a way to love you,
If only I could will myself to love you!
Then at last from these chains I would be free;
But you’re like a brother to me.