Craftsman in Berlin
Seeking is an eternal black alley that stretches past finding.
They say the trick is knowing where to stop or not starting at all.
But you have never had a head for magic or good counsel
so you tumble into your soul & wander in blackness,
fold your voice into a box & follow the song to Berlin,
where spring is variegating from winter’s ashes & the green of Görlitzer
is covered in white & melanin lusts, hippie park of floating anxieties.
You settle into the cool of the Africans & sink into their aspirations.
The orange blue green graffiti backdrop lights a fire in your soul,
your eyes swim in the sun & burn with laughter,
you always manage to find the Buddha heads.
This is home, but for a moment,
because seeking is running & the matrix must bring you back
to the question of your existence & ask for validation.
Maybe if you build a good poem the right metaphor will save you –
so measure a rhythm for your doubt,
chisel a transcendent image for your self-loathing,
find language to reconstruct a new identity
from the breaking pieces of yourself.
Craftsman sometimes the poem is a gun to your head,
a river, a noose, the saving death –
& sometimes the poem fails.
Efe Paul Azino is the author of For Broken Men Who Cross Often, a poetry collection.