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Poetry

Sonata of Joda

by CARL TERVER

What unrest do we share 

what dream, what quest?

what face of you comes

to me in my day sleep? 

I am worn-out from re-entries

into a portal wearied by our

yoked and un-yoked desires. 

didn’t I proclaim: to say

I only once loved you is to say

the cosmos, too, only once existed? 

Joda, what a name, from the 

tired boughs of a love song, 

disarming me like my failure 

to write an epic love poem. 

what dream did I commit 

when I first bore you into 

a poem? that you must re-

surrect so often and ever,

so near and far — stop these

purrings; stop your second comings, 

if you won’t confess this poet

To his salvation. 

Carl Terver is a Nigerian essayist and poet, and he is the founding editor of Afapinen. He is the author of the poetry chapbook For Girl at Rubicon. His essays have been published in Praxis, The Republic, and The Question Marker.