I did all I could
with what I was given –
my talents, my lyrics.

I lived by the code
my creed was real; my gifts evident
I harnessed it – chapter n’ verse;

I was here to give light
to Hope, to make certain
in meek ways, a mortal could

to clarify that:
Life is a Traffic jam but
Failures can still birth success.

There was nothing of the average
in me, in my life, in my belief, in my hustle
only that I didn’t accept Prejudice or boredom.

My course, my life’s testimony was poetry –
a mirror, an authority in times of despondence.
I fought a good fight, died too soon. Still, I Rise.

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | | 2020

Harmattan Came

Morning gripped the city in a cold
in its mist, dry out of temper wind blew
stinging skin, nostrils, and throat
in every home, fires were kindled
stirred and stoked with lean woods
hunting away chills that pierce the bones
of old and young who gathered around it.
Low-hanging clouds dribbled and drizzled
with fine droplets of mist mixed with
dust spewed forth from matching footsteps
from a street that never goes asleep.
Even today – Sunday all are matching
towards God’s man-made-house –
our cathedral and home of woes
just then it starts to drizzle
as thin brown films cover every surface –
Harmattan came.

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | |2020

Tribute to Ozumba Mbadiwe Road, Victoria Island–Lagos. A route I commute most in Lagos. The Harmattan season makes a ride through your ever busy lanes very memorable.



I – all my father bequeathed me
were good name n’ honesty – a treasure,
so rich to pay for Tomorrow’s fare –
value beyond measure.

A bureaucrat, resorting to vile schemes
to covet commonwealth to bestow to his children
my father did not, nor did his fathers before him
they were no rascals made rich by graft.

He pleaded with me in God’s name to act the same
while I live, this virtue to my progenies bestow
but, behind closed doors, I’ve tasted
the best burger in town – cash for silence.

Bribery – sweet like honey mostly
when you’ve known poverty all your life,
a little may refresh but
too much gluts the stomach.

My lips are unclean
I now live for two reasons:
I was born,
I haven’t died yet.

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | | 2020

Photo Source:

A Conqueror’s Memoir

A tale shall be told
of a man whose story
is long and impressive.
A story of resilience and valor
with an extravagant show of discipline.

Of a man who conquered the arena
with his sword of firm courage,
with his hard-clinched fit and steady feet.
And fought with every ounce of his strength,
like a merciless gladiator
who staked his own life in a gamble.

Of a man who never sank
but swam across the Atlantic
despite being shown no iota of prudence
by the turbulence of the ocean storm.

A man who was top of all his endeavors,
who lived with the awareness,
that history will only tell
the tale of the very best men
who were well and truly manly.

Copyright © Onah Chidera J.H. | | 2020

Photo: James Arthur Baldwin an American novelist, playwright, essayist, poet, and activist.

Onah Chidera is an unpublished poet and a copywriter who help brands and companies maximize productivity and enlarge customer base by creating irresistible advert contents and fine online presence through his creativity. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from a prestigious Nigerian university. Chidera is an Enugu resident and a native of Nsuka – Nigeria.

A Thousand Times

Each time,
I find in her a distinct gratification –
far better thrill than last time,
even though we’ve exhausted
each other a thousand times.
A philanderer knows the ecstasy
of having had a thousand dames,
once each time, but will never know
what gleams in the eyes of old couples
when they stare at each other
across a room a thousand times.
Fidelity is a more potent elixir
than any potion sold by a playboy
in the Intimacy market.

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | Spilledwoords | 2020

I’m Not a Christian

To: eyes that pensively look
minds that ponder in thoughts deep
evil in some form is everywhere
but I deplore that sanctioned and
somewhat made holy by tradition.

I’ve not my childhood pal asked nor will I
why he no longer bears his family name
since he took a wife, nor will I
why his stunning daughters that had dreams
have pasted their prime without mates.

Ask? I dare not –
prey right from minutes after birth
I had oft thought aloud how every being
born to Ndigbo, marked OSU, are
treated with inhumanity and indignity.

He or she even after being domesticated
must be tamed like a pet lion cub
caged at maturity to the lowest degree
of humiliation, far below beggary
out of ignorance – out of a godless old wife’s tale.

For a to-be bride or gloom, happiness is an illusion
mere notions of his or her pedigree
an unsigned death warrant;
Misfortune of marriage, triggered by
nothing more than flint of superstition.

Tradition! Why are you a corpse I can’t convince?
often have I imagined if we’re Christians
we would this burden they bear burning hurt
on their shoulders relieve
but I’m not a Christian! We’re nothing in spite.

Good, God! Who judges equity with what gall
with what clings to custom
we insanely denounce you,
churches we build, Holy writ we profess
are mere edifice of our vanity and hypocrisy.

Yet I must stand before my kin’s
upturned faces and try to teach them
something they’ve not known and may never –
“Superstition is death that lurks
within the house that houses them.”

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | | 2004


You, campaign for them
spend time, money and
energy to sell them to others
defy logical arguments to win votes,
bear the brunt of waiting endlessly,
under very unfriendly weather conditions
to thumbprint, to bequeath them power.

They promise to better your lot,
swore by their mother’s graves and
vowed to offer their blood to vampires
if they fail in their pact, but
once you deliver, they retract,
false on truth, grand in deceit
they become demigods demanding worship.

They start every plenary with a prayer
tell lies throughout, end with a prayer and
enjoy the booty of public office without a hoot.
But, when the ever prompt four-year cycle
and campaign ephemera tickling like clock dawn;
they come running by, they remember you.
You’re a fool, you’re an idiot; you’re doomed (maybe).

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | | 2020

Good, God!

Good, God! A word was once said
of your persecuted devotees – Christians:
“Faith and virtue runs in their tribe”;
conmen now man churches, they’ve
sold your Jesus for a new master – Money
Naira is now Alpha and Omega
commerce, mega domes n’ elegant alters
is now fad – the new evangelism,
Holy writ they profess as born-again –
a mere speck on the hotplate of righteousness;
a mere portrayal of vanity and hypocrisy.

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | Spilledwoords | 2020

Photo credit: Gregorius-maximillian for Unsplash

A Tweet to the Street

My ancestor’s wildest dream
a rare country today – my birthplace
yet not the land of my fathers.
My future has been stolen
stacked away in bank vaults
in Zurich, London n’ New York
exchanged for mansions in Dubai n’ Paris.

As citizens, often, we amuse ourselves:
we’re no cowards at the hour of reckoning,
braggarts or hashtag activists afterward
we’re unwavering for a cause, not for the cheer
but, in truth we are lazy, entitled n’ docile;

we stick our hands in our pockets
afraid to say a YES or a definite NO
unable to stand for or against our interests
we are left to incubate the Status quo –
deeds that have little bearing on the main plot,

it’s our drama and that of our children that is being staged.
We’re actors n’ audience both, yet unable to change the script,
we tweet n’ chant issues of no concern to us –
I can’t breathe, Big Brother Naija, Donald the Biden
while Southern Kaduna burns, while Poverty dines at our table.

Send a tweet to the street –
Wake up, Millennials! Rediscover yourself, your strength.
Change is an unwilling taskmaster, except when led
by the hand by willing crusaders.
Send a tweet to the street –
“A voice raised is a vision realized;
a voice heard is Power held to account!”

Copyright © Ugo Nkwoala | Spilledwoords | 2020