(... HIS POEM ...)
From my hotel window,
I see yellow sun leap off golden rooftops
Into the heights above.
Abuja’s reminder of the brevity of my existence.
I see metal caress air
As defiant cars swoop past men in grandeur.
Trees sway in the wind,
Dancing to the heartbeat of the earth.
This city on a hilltop tells its own story,
Tales of capitalism, of fatherland, of cabals,
Her buildings stand with elegance, head raised in pomp above vain thoughts of men.
Yet I wonder… was this beauty not born of others sweat?
I say to myself, “blood is thicker than water”
Surely, a leader must keep his word.
Somewhere in this dark room a voice replies in a whisper,
“It seems you forget that oil is thicker than blood”.
From my hotel window,
I see orange sun set atop lofty mountains
Revealing diamonds arduously hidden in the sky,
A twinkle here, a twinkle there and a man’s hope is born.
Velvet curtains shiver, as a cool night breeze blows by
Carrying along gory news from the south,
News of dying crops, of poisoned soil,
Of Mother Nature forced to drink the bitter mix of blood and oil.
Sons slain for the cowardice of their fore-fathers
Become nothing but forgotten names time left behind.
Patriotism was sold along with the soul of my nation,
Yet I wonder… was this gore not born of others greed?
They say the black gold has coveted the eyes of my countrymen,
That this oily tear of the earth has drunken them,
They say we are a people fast-heading to destruction.
I ask, can oil make my people forget who they are… one nation bound in freedom.
(... HIS INTERVIEW ...)
EGC: Your Real Name & Stage Name
ANGEL: My parents birthed me as Gabriel Ehijie, but i go by the stage name ArchAngel.
EGC: Discipline/What You Do
ANGEL: I’m a poet/spoken word artiste.
EGC: Other Creative Art Forms You Practice
ANGEL: Aside poetry, I also write songs and script for short films.
EGC: What Made You Go Into Poetry
ANGEL: I would say i found it as a means of self-expression.
EGC: Kind Of Poems You Write/Perform
ANGEL: I’ve been told i write celestial poems, but i prefer to think i write poems that connect with the souls of people and stir them to change their outlook/perspective on life.
EGC: People Who Inspire You In Poetry
ANGEL: locally, Ken saro Wiwa and internationally, Khalil Gibran.
EGC: What You Hope To Achieve With Poetry
ANGEL: i hope to stir the minds of people to make their immediate environment a Heaven on earth, after all man is destined to live once.
EGC: Your First Time At Be Blessed
ANGEL: My first time at 'Be Blessed' was the BB13 edition.
EGC: How Many Times You Came To Be Blessed
ANGEL: Unfortunately, i have only been able to attend it twice, my second time being the BB14 edition in which the spectacular movie 'Full Proof' was premiered.
EGC: Poets You'd Like To See At Next Be Blessed
ANGEL: I would like to see Dike Chukwumerije perform at the next edition of 'Be Blessed.'
EGC: Most Memorable Edition Of Be Blessed And Why
ANGEL: My most memorable edition of 'Be Blessed' would be the BB14 edition because of the amazing young talents that graced the stage that day, and also because i was among the opportune few that first watched 'Full Proof' due to it being premiered that day.
EGC: What You Missed About Be Blessed
ANGEL: I miss the artistic atmosphere.
EGC: What You Like About EGC
ANGEL: i like the fact that EGC is not operating on the stereotypical notion that Lagos is where all the talent lies but also letting the world know that there are amazing talents in Ibadan.