Courtesy of Kevin Nice, Unsplash

“Human rights don’t trickle down.” Heather Marsh, Binding Chaos: Mass collaboration on a global scale

Sometimes memories smell like a dictator’s fart
We once jived to our own shadows under the silver moon
and our shadows danced along with us, we rhymed to the
nightmares of hyenas and hallucinations of black owls.
Our desires sailed along with gowns of fog back and forth
at village dawns. Wood smoke smelt like fresh baked
bread.Time bewitched us, we ate William Shakespeare and
John Donne. We drank lemon jugs of Langston Hughes and
Maya Angelou. Soyinka’s lyrical whisky wrecked our
tender nerves. We bedded politics with boyish demeanor
and dreamt of the black cockerels and black Hitler’s

Sometimes time is stubborn like a sitting tyrant
Last night, commissars chanted a slogan and you
baked a dictator’s poetry sanguage. Zealots sang
Castro and Stalin and you brewed a socialist crank,
the president is a stinking capitalist. I never said
he is Satanist.Back to village nights, hyenas are
laughing still, black owls gossiping, silver moon
dancing still over rain beaten paths of our country dawns.

Sometimes time stinks like a dictator’s fart
Your lyrical satire sneaked imbeciles through
back doors. Your praise sonnets recycled suicidal
devils and polished revolutionary rejects, Back then,
smells of fresh dung and scent of fresh udder milk
were our morning brew and under the twilight the
moon once disappeared into the earthly womb, Judas,
the sun then took over and every dictator is an
Iscariot. I never said we are now vagabonds
Sometimes time smells like a dying autocrat

Mwedzi wagara ndira uyo tigo tigo ndira – the moon
was once sour milk silver white and fresh from the Gods’
mouth and sat on its presidential throne on the
zenith of bald headed hills and later with time
the moon was ripe to go mwedzi waora ndira tigo tigo ndira
Sometimes wind gusts whistled their tenor through
elephant grass pastures, we sang along the obedient flora

Chamupupuri icho…oo
chamupupuri chaenda chamupupuri chadzoka
Chamupupuri icho…oo!

Our poverty marinated, yellow maize teeth grinned to
sudden glows of lightening, the earth gyrated under
the grip of thunder, then Gods wept and we drank
teardrops with a song mvura ngainaye tidye makavu,
mvura ngainaye tidye makavu ..

Pumpkins bred like rabbits, veldts strutted in
Christmas gowns. Wild bees and green bombers
sang protest and praise. I never said we are
children of drought relief.

Sometimes time grows old like a sitting tyrant,
Tonight the echo of your praise poetry irk the
anopheles stranded in tired city gutters to swig
the bitter blood of ghetto dwellers, gutter
citizens eking hard survival from hard earth
of a hard country , their rough hands marked
with scars of the August Armageddon, their sandy
hearts are rigged ballot boxes stuffed with corruption,
they waited and sang for so long . . .

Chamupupuri icho…oo chamupupuri chaenda
chamupupuri icho…oo chamupupuri chadzoka
Chamupupuri icho..oo

© 2020, Mbizo Chirasha

Thanks to Zimbabwean poet in exile, Mbizo Chirasha, for hosting this week’s prompt.  Just a reminder to readers: Mbizo is still in search of safe harbor and we continue to seek a host in Germany or other viable state. If you can help or have leads, please email me at


Mbizo invites us to write a poem or poems that are anti-corruption in government.

  • please submit your poem/s by pasting them into the comments section and not by sharing a link
  • please submit poems only, no photos, illustrations, essays, stories, or other prose


Poems submitted through email or Facebook will not be published.

IF this is your first time joining us for The Poet by Day, Wednesday Writing Prompt, please send a brief bio and photo to me at to introduce yourself to the community … and to me :-). These are partnered with your poem/s on first publication.

PLEASE send the bio ONLY if you are with us on this for the first time AND only if you have posted a poem (or a link to one of yours) on theme in the comments section below.  

Deadline:  Monday, February 24 by 8 pm Pacific Time. If you are unsure when that would be in your time zone, check The Time Zone Converter.

Anyone may take part Wednesday Writing Prompt, no matter the status of your career: novice, emerging or pro.  It’s about exercising the poetic muscle, showcasing your work, and getting to know other poets who might be new to you.

You are welcome – encouraged – to share your poems in a language other than English but please accompany it with a translation into English.

Jamie Dedes:

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Poetry rocks the world!


For Peace, Sustainability, Social Justice

The Poet by Day officially endorses Bernie Sanders for President.

The New New Deal

Link HERE for Bernie’s schedule of events around the country.

“Democracy is not a spectator sport.” Bernie Sanders

“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton


  1. Cerastes

    In innocent days of innocent joys, we played
    in the sand, on the new land, feeling safe, with plenty
    in peace- nor wailing sirens nor piercing screams,
    but flowers blooming, amid ever green trees,

    clear water streams accessible, giving shade and fruit,
    in freedom solved all oncoming problems, offered gratitude
    for blessings affordable, friendly neighbors, open roads-
    open houses, environments clean and safe-

    but silent troubles surf, time turns pages, changes the scenes,
    begin new chapters, peace fades into parades, clippoty clop turns
    into metallic squeaks marching boots sound in the streets-
    soldiers all over, stand guard blocked are the roads ,

    no free pass, stopped by wires, barbed-‘country is saved ‘the radio says,
    ‘ the enemy disgraced- but why do the people feel enslaved?
    aedes have attacked ,Hyades hides in the milky way, martial law in place
    ‘noble plow land bears no grains’ ‘all is grief, all is pain’

    how can any character be tested? in a sensitive situation
    or by the power in him, vested?’ But where have all the good
    people gone? Killed? murdered jailed, arrested ? Was peace in or out?
    Long time passing, when will they ever learn? Will they ever learn?

    ‘I am a free man’, he said.’ In power to command and control
    in ruling over all. If you want peace, stay peaceful’.
    Fear tension came to stay, fetters applied, bullets sprayed
    tear gas shells burst every week, thus began the traitors greed

    Never can anyone be fully aware of preexisting ethical tendencies-
    now our afflictions have no end, power shifts from same hand to hand
    rich getting richer, poor poorer, greedy greedier, rented killers are beasts
    falsehood is truth, favored is the law, so grab the land , enjoy the feasts.

    There is more than meets the eye on paper , Anjum, millions are bitten,
    suffer the disease, Dengue is here as malaria malingers, cursed is the
    marching anopheles,cannot kill Cyclops of prices, caught is the nation
    in the corrupted fleece, Beware Beware Cerastes has arrived,

    Arise !
    Arise Awaken ‘ Prepare to Defend or be forever bitten.’

    Liked by 1 person

  2. :: the politician ::

    memory is thought to be gone,
    remnants remain, hiding.
    working faster with out all

    those words,
    those images .


    bare bones of the fact replaced,
    restarted, corrupted items place gently
    in the box, tied.
    turn with dust.


    Liked by 1 person

    This one, defies prayers and herbs,
    Cooked in the dark of day at five star dinners,
    Gentility curves life turkey’s before they are hatched,
    The farmer, his back bent, stews in his dark sweat,
    While down the bowels of Earth, men known as boys smoke coals,
    Spitting life out in bloodied plegms,
    So cronyism and patronage saints at state joints can light up their dreams,
    Exhortation exhausts those who dare get pregnant,
    Nepotistic partriacs regale the nation with catchy tunes,
    Of dependence disguised as independence,
    Politics of economics and economics of politics,
    Lording it on the already marginalized by virtue of their location,
    Welcome to nowhere in the state of nothing led by something akin to a leech,
    A leech fat and sleek from draining the collective coffers
    In cohorts with like minded ogres who jam church isles on Sundays,
    Paying their tithes to fellow brothers in lootery,
    Direction remains fixed,
    Loud trumpets announce the loyalty pledge to a Nation on it’s knees,
    Beggary is a career and preoccupation of the masses,
    When not oddly cheering the fat cats on the stadiums,
    They are dying of curable diseases and hunger in peace,
    The fate of many a Nation State,
    Whose leadership is a radarless fighter be jet,
    That is crushing on it’s own side ,
    Making merry on the skeletal frames of an impoverished people,
    For corruption and cancer have one thing in common if truth be told,
    It fells the sick, and infects the sorroudings,
    It takes down the sick and drains the caregiver,
    It Rob’s the family of joy and peace,
    A malady that no one should get comfortable with,
    For it never knows not to take,
    Till, collectively, the entire falls into a heap of lostness,
    Corruption is the devil’s dance that so attracts the sly eyed,
    Tragedy is often in the final moments before enough is echoed,
    It crushes on itself, eating the eater and the remains of the eaten,
    Stuff of the most unnecessary revolutions and counter revolutions,
    Blood baths and massacres,
    Shocking results of long term abuse by morally decadent chiefs long turned thieves,
    Those who steal till the owners notice,
    And in harsh attempts to preserve their rotten systems,
    Gag all who dare to raise a voice.
    The way of corruption is the way of conflict,
    The only solution is truth, justice and accountability,
    Minus that, civil wars and militia business is here to stay.
    Let poetry not be accused of being silent when corruption stages it’s false drama.

    Nancy Ndeke
    February 2020

    Liked by 1 person

  4. the country is plundered
    well said
    and where were we
    when they robbed it
    it was like a whirlwind
    the pickpockets are even slower
    billions stolen and exported
    invested in silicone and boats

    and now where
    we are talking
    We’re just talking
    We’re just talking

    Liked by 3 people

  5. ~ The Last Horseman Is The One Who Counts ~

    There is no profit in peace, you know.
    White Horse or Red, the blood must flow.
    Human constructs, like Conquest or War,
    Benefit the rich and bury the poor.
    I think the Draft should be reinstated;
    So that ALL might witness the horror created.

    Send the war-mongers’ sons first,
    To hold the Front Line’s Hell.
    Watch them die, or even worse,
    Return home, as a shell.
    If politician’s kids are killed or maimed,
    Will war then taste as good as they claimed?

    Tell me:

    What’s the magic, almighty dollar amount?
    To make endless war worth the body count?
    If Corporations are people, now, too,
    Let’s send them to war, and see if it’s true.
    Will those corporations scream in pain as they bleed?
    Will they writhe in agony for a rich man’s greed?
    Will they lose their limbs, and maybe their minds?
    Does the Machine care about the bones, the bodies it grinds?

    In the end:

    There is no prophet of peace, you know.
    The love of money is Greed:  War’s C.E.O.
    The wars will continue,  the innocents will still fall.
    And the Pale Horse’s rider will someday claim all.
    ~ C.L.R. ~ ©2013

    Liked by 1 person

  6. ~ Price Check ~
    They convinced us we needed more heroes,
    our innocence stolen by enemy acts.
    Hypothetical lives multiplied
    by infinite zeroes,
    politicians crafted their blood-bathed pacts.

    They claimed that it was American pride,
    that demanded our instant retaliation.
    Eleven years in, with one win for our side,
    the incessant meat-grinder churns
    for our nation.

    No lessons from history considered or needed,
    the bodies of young soldiers
    not their own.
    The “War on Terror” will never be ceded,
    the truth to the public will never be shown.

    War-mongering, insidious
    tails wagging dogs,
    main-stream media feeding sheep pablum;
    Celebrity red herrings, athletic, sexed fogs,
    forget the grist issues,
    or those who have them.

    They sold us out for a long-dead dream,
    used our men and womens’ blood for oil
    to grease the wheels of the war machine,
    killed our youth, spilled the truth,
    on enemy soil.

    Our lions being led by greedy, hate-spewing lambs:
    Puppet-masters, desiccated and dead inside.
    Keep mangling brave children of Uncle Sam’s,
    all in vain, in the name of American pride…

    ~ C.L.R. ~ © 2012

    Liked by 1 person

  7. JAMIE DEDES and the editorial Team , I thank you for growing me in the writing world. Thank you for your great dedication , Aluta Continua , Together We Rise . Thank you to all friends , Poets and Comrades . I SALUTE ,

    Liked by 3 people

  8. .power, oh really.



    blinded those that could not see

    the love and idle artefacts, each one

    a statement of nothing in particular.

    phased those that drove the power

    in site of home, that stopped, saw


    water that seeps insidiously into mind

    spoils all things

    things that can be mended.

    he said that most people throw broken plates away

    thank you. well really

    oh really

    Liked by 2 people

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