it is you sleeping
being fed by the sure fire of sunlight
streaming in to announce  this day

i look towards the bedroom
while stirring this morning’s coffee
who knows exactly what you will say to me
when you first wake those eyes that kissed me
with one blink before we were off
to bed
sleeping soundly

how i recognize you there behind me
in the kitchen watching me
glide across the room in my pink robe
knowing that everything we own is covered
in the long look you give me when i turn around
having found the milk to pour in
these are the things that make days begin
easy and comfortable like your gaze

these are the moments i wish for
bodies moving
breath beneath your

© Uchechi Kalu

a poem for Maya Angelou, may 28th, 2014

a poem for Maya Angelou, may 28th, 2014


I  was only 12

when my mother came to me

with your book of poetry

and all i could do

was hide in my room

and read it




I did not know what

a Phenomenal Woman was

but later when I said

I want to be a poet

at least my mother knew

what that could look like

at least my mother knew

poets made books that made

children believe they could make themselves




Just the way you look at me

those straight shot no mess eyes

insist that I

put all of me out there

for the world to see



I  was only 12

when my mother handed me your book

which was her way of telling me

it’s okay to be a girl

to be an African girl

and try to be somebody


© 2014 Uchechi Kalu