Kore, quick rising, quick falling, is the sun
Through Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius — signs
Some call inferior-shy-of-infernal, south
Towards solstice, outside Classical insight.
Demeter they say, daughter lost, resigns
Her charge of earth; but no! She phases south
As Ala, sister-self. At Kore’s sight
(Proserpine mirrored) her human son,
Greets Ahiajioku with votive designs
Of Mbari for earth favor fixed south
Of savannah, the rich New Yam feast site.
Then Capricorn calls Kore and the sun
To lead her mother’s grace to austral signs.
Boon-year bounty signs, once North, once South,
Twice sight the tropics, blessed by Queens and sun.
Ahiajioku — The Igbo goddess who personifies yam cultivation — true Discorea yams, not sweet potatoes — the bedrock of Igbo culture.
Ala — The great Igbo mother goddess who personifies the earth. Shares elements with Gaia and Demeter.
Mbari — A festival of shrines among the Owerri area Igbo, containing elaborate artwork in honor of Ala.)
[Uche Ogbuji was born in Calabar, Nigeria. He lived, among other places, in Egypt and England before settling near Boulder, Colorado. Uche is a computer engineer and entrepreneur whose abiding passion is poetry. His poems, fusing native Igbo culture, European Classicism, U.S. Mountain West setting, and Hip-Hop influences, have appeared in journals and anthologies including ELF: Eclectic Literary Forum, Corium Magazine, The Flea, IthacaLit, Unsplendid, String Poet, The Raintown Review, Victorian Violet, Mountain Gazette and New Sun Rising. He is editor at Kin Poetry Journal and The Nervous Breakdown.]