Two Poems by Gaamangwe Joy Mogami



And what if before the sadness swallows you, you remember where you hid the wounds? Would you walk back into the moving train, and rearrange the dreams, slice each one into perfect melon-sized halves, walk into the half where your mother seats looking into the horizon, searching for your face? Might you walk to her and leave your mouth in her eyes? And here, say your mouth is warmth, say your mouth is a gun, say your mouth pulls the trigger, and kills your mother’s longings. Would you stop being a history? Walk back in time, crawl back into your mother’s womb, before the origins of wounds, where the earth was ripe with beginnings. Say might you remember it all? That the wounds are not real. And that if there are, you are not the wounds, you are not the wounds. And here, might you stop drowning in this lot of sadness?


2. HERE.


There are two or three roads we took to here

and none truly explains why we became

But we are here.

In the here of misery.

The here of too many broken yesteryears.


My love,

Do you remember how your skin lit when I drowned?


How before here,

there was a violet sky and dancing with all of our ghosts,

And there in that here,

midnight was for counting all of our incarnations

in our skins and faces

before they disappearing into each other.


My love,

That here was us becoming all the us we always thought we should have been.


But we are here,

and here we will call this an overgrowth:

I tried to draw your hands as language

I tried to wash your feet, sing you the song of saccharine, make you less sadder than here.

But there is a train of light running with men like you, like grandfather and father.

Men who die before they belong to us.


My love,

Do you see the thunders holding the sky with its teeth and our backbones turning back to ruins?



Won’t you leave me with a new here?

I will love to sleep in the dreams

where the morning is potion,

And here,

is a here of warmth.




Gaamangwe Joy Mogami is a writer, filmmaker and interviewer from Gaborone, Botswana. Her poetry has been published in Brittle Paper, Afridiaspora, African Writer, Kalahari Review, Poetry Potion and Expound Magazine. Her interviews have been published in The Review Review, Praxis Magazine, Mosaic magaazine and Peolwane. Gaamangwe Joy Mogami is the Founder and Managing Editor of Africa in Dialogue. 

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