It walts, slow, arrests your gaze
With its wounded grace
As you fly by on a Lagos bridge.
It spins a sad pirouette on swampy axis
Reeks, the grandeur of an ageing barge
On a festering sea of green.
Or a spaceship, stuck on pitiless plain;
Adrift in the cosmos, bereft of stars.
In the musty caverns, marshy tongues, claws
Fangs and creepers - lay their swarthy claim.
Here the dark joys sang, danced and
Jumped - to the glory of the race
In the seventy-seventh year of a lost century.
Now it echoes silence; an amphitheatre for ghosts.
- After a visit to the National Theatre, Lagos, Nigeria - 16 August 2004
- Amphitheatre is published in the 1st issue of The Poetsletter Magazine, August 2006.