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okoye charles

(12th Febuary,1988 / Onitsha)

An Excerpt from 'The Journey of the Soul' Chapter Ten (The Wisdom of Alexandra)


'If 'tis so, I wish to know more.'
I urged him, 'Take me back in time,
Take me back, I wish to know more.
Take me back to the wisdom's clime.' 560

'I wish to see ptolemy's eyes
Touch the wild dreams of imhotep
Walk the winding world of the wise
And taste secrets that time unkempt.

Hand in hand, we walked back in time
To the past, to the wisdom's clime
To the time of Aristotle
To when Plato and life cuddles.

We came to the great citadel 565
Of learning in Alexandria
I can hear the summoning bell
Ringing thoughts of Alexandria.

The building stands tall, a huge torch
And the moon hangs o'er its tower
A guardian at night, keeping watch
While the bell heralds the still hour

My guard took me into a hall
A huge and magnificent hall 570
Fashioned from ideas and limestone
A place where knowledge will call home.

The great hall was filled to the brim
Great sages of old, all seated here
Touching my guard, I said to him 575
'What topic is being discussed here? '

'Marriage of the soul and body'
He says, 'They seek the connection
Between human soul and body
The mystery of life and creation.' 580

Hearing this my interest was pique
Perhaps I shall find what I seek
Once and for all, and all for once
So I sit like one in a trance.

A man rose from the silent crowd 585
To the very front of the hall
He speaks gently, simple and loud
Each words creeping from wall to wall.

Echebijoestus, is his name
A man wise and humble the same 590
He speaks gently, simple and loud
To the wise and fools in the crowd.

'Energy is boundless Delight,
Energy is darkness and light
Everything makes up energy 595
Nothing is void of energy.

'Energy can ne'er be created
Nor can it ever be destoryed.
Human soul can ne'er be created
Nor can it ever be destoryed. 600

'It can be transformed from one form
To another, In birth and death.
It is energy in it's form
Reborn in birth, transformed in death.

'In the begining there was God 605
His very spirit and his word
Everything known emerge from him
Everything unknown came from him.

'Nothing is created from nothing
Everything known came from something 610
The first cause of all things is God
The main uncaused causer, is God.

'What is God, but the sum total,
Of everything, known and unknown.
Who is a god, a small porter? 615
You, I, each being; known and unknown.

'Everything that has e'er been known
Is of natural universe
Everything that has ever grown
Is a part of that universe 620

'From known the soul moves to unknown
From tales told, one finds untold
From this natural universe
Comes the spiritual universe.

'Water flowing under the bridge 625
Is much more older than the bridge
And much more older is the soul
To spiritual teachings and goal.

'The soul's consciousness is the mind
The body, its visible form 630
The soul can exist void of mind
Before birth, in energy form.

'The universe is in the mind
All things known is known in the mind
The mind knows what the senses see 635
And from a small seed, grows a tree.

'No greater teacher, than Nature
No book nor tongue can fully tell
The knowledge locked in her measure
That welcomes, yet bids man farewell 640

'Gradually all things she makes new
Gradually all things she makes old
And again life is kept renew
Be it lead, or glistering gold.

'Everything that is, comes in pair 645
Equal in all and opposite
Action and reaction, both pair
Equal in all and opposite.

'For Good to be, there must be Wrong
Equal in all and opposite 650
For Rose to be, there must be Thorn
Equal in all and opposite.

'God is good, God is bad and more
He chose to be righteous always
He made that choice and nothing more 655
But the bad part remains always

'The bad part begots the devil
The damned, father of all evil
Part and parcel of God above
Part and parcel of boundless love. 660

'God can not destory the Devil
Else he destory a part of him
God can not annihilate evil
For that is not in line with him

'Once there was a war in Heaven
Which lasted long till day seven
A war between Good and Evil
A war between Saints and devil

'It is written, and so it is 665
Good at last will conquer evil
And it came to past, so it is
For Good at last conquered evil.

'It is better to reign in Hell,
Says the Devil, odd or even 670
It is better to reign in Hell
Says Evil, than serve in Heaven.

'And making that choice went away
Far into the darkness of Hell
Far from the light that grace the day 675
Far from the brightness of God he fell

'Heaven is a place made of light
Filled with love, peace and ecstasy
Hell is a place devoid of light
Built in woe, grief and misery 680

'Heaven or Hell, Slave or Ruler;
Virtue and Vice live side by side.
Darkness or Light, Earth or River;
Good and Evil live side by side.

'Every Soul can do right and wrong 685
Every Soul is both weak and strong
A choice is now given to all
To love or hate, to stand or fall.

'What is fate, but the sum of all
The choices made by souls of all 690
As 'tis on Earth, odd and even
So also it is in Heaven.

'Every human soul is born a king
For every heart is a kingdom.
Some live life and die, still a king 695
While some die, -slave in their kingdom

'Master is he, Who masters self
For every heart is a kingdom,
A war torn kingdom in itself
To be ruled by wile or wisdom. 700

'Evil has no power besides
What the soul has given to it
Good has no power besides
What the soul has bestowed on it

'By Conflict, the Soul gains wisdom 705
Now wise, he regains his freedom
For what does the Soul seekest
If not to choose and be content

'What is freedom, if not the right
To choose between your left and right 710
But a man slave to his desire
Can not tell between cold and fire.

'One can ne'er give what one has not
A squirrel can not tomorrow
Bring forth from self a cashew nut 715
Nor can True Love begot sorrow

'What a snake bore must e'er be long
The fruit of vice is always wrong
A leopard is known by its spot
And the fool's tongue with time shall rot. 720

'What we are, we became by choice
By thoughts, by words and by actions
What the soul is, it is by choice
By thoughts, by words, by reactions

'Each soul is born, hollow and plain 725
It clothes self with choices of life,
-To seek gain or to embrace pain,
-To seek self or to embrace strife.

'Nature by its right is selfish
A garden of personal wish 730
Yet it gives friends and family
And heart thats seeks for harmony

'No man is an island by right
No tree alone makes a forest
Nothing is more true than in sight 735
One wasp alone makes no hornet

'A Man is concieve a free soul
Born to choose freely his own role
But life binds him in colony
First by chain of family

'Then by norms of society
And holy rope of Religion
Blessed with fear and anxiety
And habits of indecision

'Till he is numb and senses not
And he breathes and breeds like robot
And wears that iron evermore
And acts as a free soul no more

'But the man of reason can tell
Between his dream and reality
Between true love, and fear of Hell
Which now beguiles humanity.

'Love is the greatest commandment
The Truth of the New Testament
Love is the purpose of creation
The means and end of salvation 740

'Love is to percieve God in all
A Truth held by poet and prophet
Love is to see delight in all
Always, in sunrise and sunset.

'Nature by right, abhors vaccum
It tends to fill it to the full
Love seeks to fill every vaccum
To create and reproduce in full.

'The most sublime act is to set 745
Another's care before thy own
The most sublime act is to set
Your sun and welcome the moon home

'Love rights a thousand and one wrongs
A dead body forgets all wrongs 750
A soul dead to itself and all
Loves sincerely and forgives all.

'The Soul that loves is one with God,
And free from blames and flaws of blood
Just like a Lily among thorns, 755
Perfect Love rights a thousand wrongs.

'Each soul is God, personified
In each smile, there the Heavens hide.
No bird soars too high on it's own.
No soul finds heaven on it's own. 760

'A soul can not claim to love God,
Whom its Mortal eyes have ne'er seen
If it loves not the being of mud
whom it sees in the gleam of green.

'To injure a soul, in God's name 765
Is the greatest among the wrongs
For God is boundless good by name
For God demands love for all wrongs

'There is only one rule and law
Love, and that is the greatest law
To hurt one soul, is to hurt all
To kill one soul, is to kill all.

The walk of love, is that of faith
A steadfast guard, e'en unto death
The path to hell is delusion
And littered with good intention.

'It is penned, Temptations will come
But woe to him through whom they come
Better there be no birth of him
Or that anchor and sea drowned him

In love's presence there is freedom
Ask, and you shall surely recieve
Seek, indeed you will find wisdom
Doubt, and you will learn to believe.

'Blessed are they, blind yet believe.
I have heard it said, loud and low;
True, but now this to you I give:
Blessed are they who doubt to know

'Woe to they that oppose reason
For 'tis hell they preach willingly
Woe to they that oppose reason
For Love is a choice made freely.

'Science does not conflict with God
For it seeks perfection in all
Science does not conflict with God 775
But with Religion and its law

'Is the Earth flat, the sun revolves?
Is life created, does it evolves?
Is man born cursed, or cursed once born?
And is faith in fear of Hell born? 780

'No! Earth is round and it revolves
Life is born and in God evolves
Man is born blessed. he is not cursed
And faith plus fear is dead and dust

'A loving heart does not impose 785
And in peace its teachings repose
But the Evil heart hides and runs
From light of reason, from the sun.

'A clear conscience fears no reproach
Nor does it quake when doubts approach 790
The sun at night wanes, 'tis not gone
For Earth returns its pride at dawn

'There is one religion for all
And that is our Humanity,
There is one holy war for all
War fought for all Humanity

'Heaven is in the heart of man
Hades is in the heart of man
There is no excuse for being bad
There is no reward in being sad,

'Speak the Truth to the foolish man
And he will twist it, laughing off
Speak the truth to the prudent man
And he will heed it and have enough 800

'What is Truth, but eternal love
Which Christ before pilate spoke not
For What is Truth, but God above
Speaking to the heart, cold and hot

'Men who hides the truth, creates trouble
And soon their towers will crumble
But those who freely criticize
Work for peace, and their work ne'er dies.

'There is nothing greater than truth
There is no injustice in truth
No favouritism or wrong
It endures and is fore'er strong.

'Suffer the mind to learn the Truth
To wear it's robe from top to root
Search for the Truth and you shall see
And it will surely set you free.

'There are many facts that abound
In the curse and comfort of sound
And many have I seen and known
Yet many more are still unknown.

'A rolling stone gathers no moss
A tyrant is known for brute force
A dumb man is called a weak man
And a quiet man, a wise man

'The bat does not dance in the sun
Nor does the moon in morning's light
The weevil rejects not the corn
Nor can shadow refuse the night.

'Break the dark clouds and it shall rain
Break the day and the cock will call
Break your word and you will have pain
Break Atlas and heavens will fall

'A talker exposes himself
An adulterer kills himself
A greedy man burys himself
And the drunken man mourns himself.

Man gets the meat, dog gets the bone
The miser saves for another
Stupidity weighs more than stone
The reward for peace is order.

'The tree bows only to the wind
The hungry lion to its need
What man made, he first imagined
The mighty tree was once a seed.

'A knief cuts through physical being
A spoken word cut through the soul
What is being felt but never seen
Man gives extraterrestial role.

'A deity is as mighty
As its worshipers are plenty
A deity unknown is dead
A living god's name is well heard.

'Man's desires are insatiable
A force driving the strong and feeble
The source of all knowledge is God
To hide knowledge is to hide God.

'Listen! Wisdom is calling out
In the streets and market places
In the east, west, north and the south
Calling to men of all races.

'He with ears to hear, let him hear
He with fruits to bear, let him bear
Let the good men continue still
And evil men should go on still

'Behold! the hour is coming soon
Bringing rewards of sun and moon
Behold! The hour is almost done
And this chance will be lost and gone

'The body and the soul says, come!
Come! whoever is thirsty, come!
Accept water of life, the rain
Accept eternal joy, Amen! '

Having spoken these words, no less
An hour surely, gathered his books
And slowly stepped down at the west
Leaving his light on our dazed looks.

The hall slowly becomes chatty
And gradually becomes empty
Except me, my guardian and few
Except me, my guard, and the dew

Which falls silently from my eyes.
'How holy, the words of the wise.'
I said to my guard, soft and slow
And gathered my spirit to go.

Submitted: Saturday, February 16, 2013

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Comments about this poem (An Excerpt from 'The Journey of the Soul' Chapter Ten (The Wisdom of Alexandra) by okoye charles )

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  • Chime Justice Ndubuisi (2/18/2013 5:03:00 PM)

    A nice read bro. These lines inspired these lines:

    ...
    Have you not noticed?
    That the just is unjust to the unjust?
    What? Have you not found?
    That the haters are hated most?
    That moral is immoral to the immoral?
    There is no sense in existence.
    This will not appeal to all,
    Because there is sense in nonexistence, ”
    Moralists have asked:
    “What is the purpose then, of our lives? ”
    And I have answered:
    “Go ask that to animals and trees! ”
    Are both not possessed of soul?
    Do they not die the same death?
    Where they go, none can tell.
    Don’t they return to nothingness at death?
    Thus to I spoke Nothingness: 101
    “I am myself. Everything is me!
    Everything is vain; obscure Nothingness.
    I’m horrid. Everything wants to avoid me
    But I do not despise any man;
    I allow every man to live
    And I do not love any man;
    I let every man too to die.
    Because they know nothing about Nothing,
    Because to know Nothing is an illness,
    They always go away with nothing.
    Lo! Everything is obscure Nothingness”
    To think everything as nothing is stupid
    As thinking that Nothing is impossible
    Because impossibility is already absurd
    Because everything is possible:
    The life of purpose; the aimless life!
    It is loathsome to think life absurd,
    Not because I’ve not been offended by life,
    But it’s more loathsome not to think it absurd! 120

    Yet I spoke up to Nothingness:
    “I’m not a connoisseur of life,
    But you, what have you found worthless?
    Should we then toast to life?
    What’s the advantage of the living?
    Are not the dead unconscious?
    They gave up everything. They have Nothing,
    Not because Nothing is advantageous,
    Nothing is perfect! Perfection can’t beget imperfection.
    Was man at one time perfect?
    What is now responsible for his imperfection?
    If it was pride, wouldn’t it be a pride-perfect?
    If it was choice, a perfect choice,
    I don’t wish to be logical.
    I speak in plain illogical voice
    Things both logical and fundamental,
    Not borne from any predilection,
    Not intended to counter or contradict,
    For every man’s reason is the soundest reason.
    His opinion, his verdict.140

    What audience do I have?
    My contemporaries are not my audience.
    It is for future purpose I serve.
    It is common if presently I don’t make sense;
    It’s been wont of sages since
    To speak in voices thick and dense;
    And it’s been ages since
    They saw with the future’s lens
    But it would come someday,
    It may take up to a generation
    When people will reason in this way:
    Nihilistic, indifferent to patriotism and religion.
    Thus spoke obscure Nothingness:
    “I am myself. Everything is me.
    You have said much with sure exactness;
    What are they? Nothing! Me.
    It is the way of the world:
    Delicate, fragile flames burning out,
    It burns out and begins again: no end
    But the earth can never pass out! 160
    It is men, men in their generations.
    That is the way it is,
    Men giving birth to themselves: regenerations.
    They live and die, so it is,
    Subject to the law of time and space
    Now here, now there, eventually elude
    The stranded living race”
    What are we to conclude?
    The sun that shun yesterday
    Is not the same shining today;
    Their lifespan is only for a day,
    They are born, grow old and die quietly.
    Now if life is this nonsensical,
    Do we then choose nonexistence?
    It’s our duty only to answer the call
    Or face an unfounded malice.
    What makes us guiltless and innocent
    Is this: it is not our duty to choose
    For we are born without our consent,
    And death steals without any prior notice.180
    Oh, that I have a heavenly hope!
    This I don’t fancy even.
    Or that I have an earthly hope;
    It would be best without religion:
    These, little important than we thought;
    What’s important is to live and be gone;
    To live and be remembered is life’s worth;
    To be remembered for what one has done...
    +++
    from Speaking for Nothing: Mementoes in my 'A Collection Of Poems: Bad Poems of a Good Poet' (Report) Reply

Read all 1 comments »

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