Queen Of The Gravel Heaps 1

Queen Of The Gravel Heaps 1

There she sits, shoulders haunched

her throne a heap of dusty gravel

calloused hands in tattered gloves

dark skin wrinkled and burnished by the sun

All day she chisels away at the rock

to get a heap, to earn her bread

no fancy breaks, not for her kind

commerce has no heart for sentiments

I approach, my recorder in hand

designer jeans and snug T-shirt

tanned leather Gucci sandals

C. Amanpour-like, out for a scoop

She looks up with a twisted smile

and tells her story, no trace of self-pity

widowed, four hungry mouths to feed

four female children, who gives a hoot!



24 thoughts on “Queen Of The Gravel Heaps 1” by irenecarew-bako (@irenecarewbako)

  1. Em…guess I expected more from the title…and the ending feels somewhat abrupt…but it’s nice.

    I like the gritty unapologetic feel..like straight to the effing point. You know?

    Not bad.

    1. Sorry, Seun, I actually posted 1 & 2. Maybe when you see the concluding part it would not appear so abrupt, and thanks, I always look forward to your comments you know.

      1. Wow. I’ll consider that a huge compliment…so thank you!

  2. This got me smiling. The writer is quite observant.
    But the poem could have been used to tell an interesting tale.

    1. which other tale apart from this? you have not been to Jos to see how many women make a living breaking large rocks into gravel…a very pitiable sight

      1. Exactly so Xikay, one of them whom I interviewed for a documentary was the inspiration for this poem. Maybe the second part of the poem will settle the feeling of incompleteness …..thanks for the vote of confidence.

  3. @ Irene..Is this the pending story U talked about?

    1. No, that was ” I DO” which has been published. Where is the story you mentioned? I have been off the site for a couple of days…

  4. Well written but as noted, ending was too abrupt. Loved the C. Amanpour mention, gave the piece a ‘realer’ feel. There’s something about you choice of words that makes interesting.

    1. Thanks Jay, Ive explained the abrupt ending part. By the way, Im planning on posting the poem version of Agege bread seller, dedicated to you and all those who felt it would read better as a poem, and hoping you would not be disappointed…..thanks for being there.

  5. @jaywriter…the abruptness gave it the powerful punch as opposed to a touch… i love it and like it more because i have seen many such women in Jos mountains breaking a living

    well done and go go go

    1. Thanks Xikay, watch me go!

  6. Wow! Nice piece.

    1. Yo! Justus, thanks a million!

  7. I wanted more. So how did she end up there? What about her daughters?

    You mentioned Amanpour and I was expecting a more detailed picture like she would’ve done.

    1. Thanks Myne, maybe QUEEN OF THE GRAVEL HEAPS 2 will make you happier. I posted them together, so Im sure its coming, as for how she got there, plain old poverty and no one giving a hoot for a widow with four daughters!

      1. Interesting, I’ll watch out for that then.

        Left to me, I would’ve said many men would be very interested.

        1. Hey Myne, now that is food for thought….you got my ming working you know…I bet they’ll be, for the wrong reasons!

  8. Burnished….sounds like a reprise of Burn&Banished….#WORD (y)
    And d abruptness kinda hurt you know…its like me watching the movie Xmen 1st class & Nepa takes light. Gud 1.

    1. HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

  9. I like the poem. It tells a clear story of a woman struggling to earn a living.

    About the abruptness….i believe you employed that as a key for suspence.

    Nice work! Am waiting for the interview part…..

  10. Short and simple. I enjoyed till it finished and i almost screamed:)
    God job girl!

  11. Nice poem. Feels like a woman in a crises ridden area of the middle east.

  12. I like this…

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