The metallic snake is full to the bowel.
It chugs and puffs and puffs and chugs
Dark smoke escapes its nostrils like a black arm
The irregular rhythm of the interlocking rusty wheels
It slowly straddles the African plain.
The imp sucks hungrily at her breasts
Dirty, young mother. Malnutrition, the baby’s
Tired eyes look out through the stained window
The iron shacks stare back. Glare back.
They look away; bloodshot eyes. Rugged man.
Scared, as he should be. Forlorn in the corner
Dry, thin, cracked lips.
Torn shorts. Thin shoulder peeping through his torn shirt.
It whistles. Slows.
He pushes among the bodies.
A human wave lifts him off the floor
and drops him outside among the uncaring.
He’s confused. He sits on the terra firma.
The chugging resumes.
The metal snake obliviously slithers to its next meal.
On its tail, he reads a thoughtful one’s sentiment
The chalk coughs “Lunatic Express”. He now understands.
An excerpt from the new poetry collection, Breathing Poetry by Njagi M’Mwenda due to be launched on 22nd June. You can pre-order a copy on Amazon
For orders within Nairobi text or call 0715676724