Mutima by Ian Keteku

Give me your hand,
I will show you
Open your palm,
I will read you
the greatest love story ever told:

When God burnt
melancholy in the skies
and traced envy in dirt,
moulded our ancestors from mud
and scissored our thoughts
into our thoughts,
God forgot (so we thought)
to give us a heart.

Then came a day when our maker
had to leave, rest
from slitting wrists to breed oceans,
retire the holy shotgun
shooting stars to birth planets
and pause….

Before God set forth,
Alpha and Omega left us
with a heart
no larger than a fist.
A reminder of her.

The heart was left
weeping blood for tears
streaming across the Serengeti,
the Red Sea middling
its way to the Mediterranean
ending in the Nile.

“How could our father leave us?”
asked the heart.
Sun, moon, darkness and rain
had no answer.
After aeons of mourning,
after three forevers and 2 days
the crying heart carved a home
in the chest of a man.

And this is why
we will always long for God.

I realize now what
scientists have known for a few
hundred years, what
the creator has known always:
there is a reason
the heart is the size of a fist.

Our connection to God, heart;
hands the expression of heart.

Four fingers and thumb closed
four fingers and thumb closed
fist touching fist
is a pounding pound,
two pounding hearts in
the shape of a heart. Ironic
not, perfect, yes. Hands
harmonize with ease,
reasonable spirit
made puzzle pieces.

to use hands to pray
hands to speak
hands to hurt
to feed
to eat
to show
affection, a fist in the sky
shows love, your allegiance
to love
to something

Fingers clutch cigarettes
clogging arteries, we pump
iron with our fists, ironic
not, perfect, yes.

The only
absolute synonym for love:
God is love.
Give me your hand, I will
show you forever.
Open your palm,
I will tell you
the greatest love story ever told.
A story from Uganda,
a tale of a heart, Mutima
waiting for the love
of its life to come home.


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