3 folklore poems by Mark KH

Poetry, Punk Noir Magazine

El Wayúu

During the infancy of these enchanted lands
Before the chinchorros ensnared Barranquilla
Maleiwa cast a spell over woman and man
“¡Vengan, mi’hijos! Amamanten a La Guajira”

So out of the mist, they appear day after day
To tend their cattle on the buxom Macuira
Below, a bleating baby is born on the plains
Foretold by dancing couplets on the Ranchería

Da-dum, da-dum, da-dum

Key:

El Wayúu = an indigenous Colombian tribe
Chinchorros = fishing nets
Maleiwa = The Wayúu’s principal god and creator
Barranquilla = city in the north of Colombia
¡Vengan, mi’hijos! Amamanten a la Guajira = Come, my children! Suckle from the Guajira
La Guajira = a region of Colombia comprised of mountainous jungle and flat desert plains
Macuira = a mountain range
Ranchería = name of the river that flows through the Guajira region

Anger

A provoking tingle
In the back of the mind;
Out of sight
Easily ignored

Scorned, it brands a castigating burn
Marked herewith a forewarning, stern;
In plain sight
Defiantly ignored

(Oh! Naïve children of Cybele
A judgment made at one’s peril, ye
Before the gods, will now tremble!)

The rivers of Hades bubble
They lash and grumble
Vexed waters double
Pounding Cerberus’s heads till

They howl with a ferocious rage
Unleashing Mars from his cage;
A thundering call to war made
A flash of his spear pierces al – A rupturing hate!

But the great warrior stumbles;
He peers down into nearby dark waters
Reflected back is a weeping heart
Punctured by his own hopeless contempt

And so, he finally falls
To sleep, aching giant, to sleep

Shedding Demons

They claw at you from the depths of their despairing sewers as they
Seek with their vile self-loathing
To infect you
Torment you from their abominable abyss, but
You should sneer, my dear, at such shoe-tread dirt
Formed in the sludge of their own filth

From their fowl fingers, drips a noxious goo in
Darkness, shadowed by their desperate longing for acknowledgment
But they cannot reach beyond the manhole

Cover your eyes, inhale and visualise;
Now fly away from where they reside, my love
Your hand is in mine as we soar through the
Eyes of the storms; we see them shrink in fear
And a gust of wind, a flutter of wings, and
Exhale; you are free

Mark KH is a 32-year-old poet and freelance translator from the Stratford-upon-Avon area. He is a graduate of Creative Writing and Spanish, and he currently lives in Shakespeare’s county with his parents. Mark likes to claim this is because most aspiring poets barely have a penny to their names, but in reality, it is due to a long-standing illness. In his free-time, he enjoys playing guitar, singing, genealogy, and masochistically watching Man United. Mark also likes trying his hand at cooking different cuisines with, let’s say, mixed results. Mark can be found on Twitter: @MarkKHwords