Ralph Cherbo Geeplay: "I was born in Pleebo, Southeastern Liberia, West Africa. I published my first set of poems in 2009 in the Liberian Sea Breeze Journal, edited by Stephanie Horton. A Pan African poet, I write about Africa, the Liberian civil war, my Grebo heritage, and everything in between. I recently published my poetry in the Blue Lake Review, and the Adelaide Literary Magazine for which I was THE FINALIST OF THE ADELAIDE LITERARY AWARD FOR POETRY 2018. I am the editor of an online journal, The Liberian Listener, and live in Edmonton Alberta, Canada, with my family."Tributes 

Farewell to Ellen

Farewell to Ellen

It rains so much in
Monrovia that a
day is like the
bloated dough
on a grey earthly
May, washing
over October. My
love, the sun, hides
in her bright den
refusing to be seen.
Life comes to a slow
twiggy motion; the
forest is breathing
with moisture, like
a hut puffing
smoke as a pipe.
While the creeks
bridged their ledges,
there is a seismic
run-down Waterside!
Enough, no more,
the sewage can take!
She is in my arms,
listening to the music
pounding the roof.
Still, calm, reading
Ebony Dust, though,
with lightning bolts
yelling to be heard.
The clatter is like
a rumble—tumbling
falling rockets. The
sorry corrugated zinc
holds her seams,
the bed is dry,
but the room
is a puddle.
The city is
cramp and damp,
like a soaked sponge
dripping with water.
The hustling contested
old city in an evening
fog, the Mesurado in
a bulge, taking Fanti
fishermen to and fro,
to the edge of Westpoint.
To love in the midst of mists,
of raging thunder under your
ears and an air filled with
blithering vermin, is to
drink a linctus in anger,
cooped in wretched
penury. So when the
wait, cannot wait to
be over, you my love
must endure, waiting
to part with the wrath
the rains imposed,
much needed however,
to calm the California
wildfires, gifted on
these shores, for
free. Now: you
understand, then,
the irony of nature!

Ralph Cherbo Geeplay was born in Pleebo, Southeastern Liberia, West Africa. He published my first set of poems in 2009 in the Liberian Sea Breeze Journal, edited by Stephanie Horton. A Pan African poet, Geeplay writes about Africa, the Liberian civil war, his Grebo heritage, and everything in between.

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