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  Aug 2021 Ikimi Festus
Ilia Talalai
I left you there:
somewhere between night and day
between certainty and loneliness

We danced the story that was written long before we met:
I winked
                     you smiled
I spoke
                     you laughed
you spoke
                      I listened

and where I left you
                                  my heart stayed
                  It was yours from that first bashful gaze

I stood there in that odd hour
feeling for a fiery glow I had held with unerring adoration...
I knew naught where I had misplaced it

As I patted each of my pockets for that missing warmth
I recalled all the places I could have left it:

Between the conversations
                where our gaze held secrets no words could contain?

In the dark speckles
                that shined like jewels in your hazel spheres?

Between your thighs
               where you impatiently placed my hand?

Maybe between our lips
               where warm embraces enveloped more
                          than our shared breath?

Could your sweet caress
              have secreted away my cagebird heart
                          without me noticing?

Or perhaps while we tumbled in our bed...
               was it left between the sheets?
It matters little where it has been lost....
                                                        ­      it is no longer mine to hold

And all these blossoming memories
pang and freeze
under this morning chill

I stand in the twilight of dawn
paralyzed without desire
to direct my feet...

My foggy breath reminds me of the cold vacancy overwhelming

As a rising frustration with my carelessness
quickens my bellows breath
the fog thickens with unnatural urgency

Is it this gray blanket enveloping me in cold
or was that glowing ruby keeping me warm?  

Even my fury does nothing to warm my blood
it is cold compared to the radiance I felt.

I shut my eyes and cover my face with clenched empty hands
as my mind rages a primal cacophony of confusion...

Without warning
a silvery beam cuts through the fog
piercing my mind

Quite suddenly
                               ... I am free

In this suffering morn
a smile returns just as sky begins to glow
bringing light and gentle surrender
to my worried brow

As clear as that beam
a soothing thought wipes clean my silly tragedy
as I remember Loves most unique personality:

She comes with an ebbing mirth and surreal comfort
as if to conceal a fragile ember sparked.

It rises almost imperceptibly
in the periphery of moments
shared with loved ones:

Affection and attention are its fuel

In our warm farewells we cease the stoking of that flame
and what follows is instant loss...

Like a fool I have searched in desperation for what rests in the palm of my hand. My beating heart remains and it is has never left

It is your radiant smile
your beautiful heart
the gifts we shared freely
and your gentle adoration
that had lit my soul aflame

Without you near to shine marvels on my life
the sobering reality feels cold and painfully solid

All these memories that sweep over me and overwhelm
are guiding me back to Love

To your warm hands
                  To your passionate breath
                             And our nurturing embrace.

"I will see you soon, my love..."
whispers from
every corner of my mind
                           ­    ...and I am free

My worries vanish as the tear falls from my cheek
and the sun greets me with a new day
  Aug 2021 Ikimi Festus
Jake Hodges
nothing can compare to that one moment of your life when you feel like everything is absolutely perfect. everything is as it should be. you feel like living your life like it should be lived. you feel like taking risks you've never thought of taking before. because before this one moment of your life, you were always too afraid of the outcome of that risk. you were afraid that it would be a mistake.

nothing can compare to the moment where you find out something you thought would be a mistake actually isn't a mistake. sometimes, you have to make a mistake to find out if it is a mistake. even if you know it is already. if you don't take that risk, you may never know what could have been. you'll live your entire life wondering if you had taken that one risk, maybe everything would be how you want it to be.

if you don't taste the stale cereal, you'll never know if it really is stale.

tell the person you love that you love them. don't be afraid of rejection. for all you know, they love you just the same and are too afraid that you won't accept them for who they are to tell you how they feel.

turn in that college application. maybe your grades aren't the best in the world. so what? don't be afraid of rejection. maybe you will get accepted to that college anyway, because they see how much you commit.

go to the job interview. put on your best suit. your prettiest dress. don't be afraid of rejection. maybe the guy interviewing you has the same personality as you. maybe they like the same kinds of things you do. maybe you're perfect for this job.

ask god for forgiveness. maybe in your mind, what you did is completely unacceptable and can not be forgiven. don't be afraid of rejection. god loves you for who you are, and accepts the fact that you made a mistake. but he knows it's only a mistake. and if you hadn't made that mistake, you wouldn't have asked god for forgiveness, and your relationship with god would not have been as powerful as it is after you have experienced his forgiveness.

or maybe you're not religious. have you tried to understand any sort of religion, or have you just automatically pushed it away because it seems so ridiculous and makes no sense? don't be afraid of rejection. maybe you'll find something you can hold on to. something to believe in. and if not, at least you tried. you put yourself, body and mind, out into the world to experience something completely foreign to you. at least you know for sure how you feel now.

take the risk.
make that mistake.
taste the cereal.
  Aug 2021 Ikimi Festus
Eshwara Prasad
Convinced was he in the end
that everything that happened
to him was the best that could
have happened.
  Jun 2021 Ikimi Festus
City lights,
Sunday Blues.

Can we reset?

Long drives,
Left me in pieces.
The fear of death follows the fear of life.
The fundamental nature of knowledge, reality, and existence.
Would one be ready when the bittersweet death arrives,
The deafening silence and the danger of the mind and its insistence.

The twists and turns to envelop the philosophy of life can make one glad or mad.
Like what “success” means, what one’s purpose in life is.
How to decide on what is “good” and bad”.
Questions as old as time where the philosophy of life takes such bliss.

The philosophy of life takes the meaning of life into account.
The aspect of existence that processes, acts, reacts, and evolves through growth.
The real reason one would get up in the morning fills no amount
A void that fills the philosophy of life is what’s keeping death and life betrothed.
  Apr 2021 Ikimi Festus
Someone once told me :
always remember that,
some people come into your life to make chaos.
and some people and come into your life to show love.

Some people will use you
Some people will always be there for you
Some people will be true
Some people will lie
Sometimes you will learn from a mistake
Sometimes you fall and that’s okay.

Sometimes you’ll  fall in love to hard
Sometimes you’ll cry alone
But you’ll be okay even if you’re alone
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