The Statues are Silent, Staring
23 May 2006
I'm sitting in the living room.
The statues do not understand
the futility of silence.
Nevertheless, I stare at them,
waiting for one of them to move.
One at a time, I check them out,
eyes meeting with total silence.
The bronze boy-Oba of Benin,
stoic, eyebrows frozen in place,
whispers to the woman and child
when I'm not watching.
I am never privy to it.
The ashen white altar God
with exaggerated penis
mocks the much larger Ikenga
made of brown wood, with outstretched hands.
They are waiting for me to move,
as the shadows of the day stretch
slowly across the living room
strangling the light:
avatars of another world
that only appears motionless
but nothing is ever as it seems.
What light?! Where have the shadows gone?
The walls are not really solid,
nor is this dwelling permanent
or this body.
In their silence, they understand,
refusing to acknowledge
my fleeting presence.
For they will be here long after
the last shadow passes
and the only evidence of my past
will be their staring at an empty chair.
© 2006, Satya J. Gabriel