shot glass
"... brevity is the soul of wit ..."
- William Shakespeare


Uche Ogbuji (@uogbuji) was born in Calabar, Nigeria. He lived, among other places, in Egypt and England before settling near Boulder, Colorado. A computer engineer and entrepreneur by trade, his collection of poetry, Ndewo, Colorado is forthcoming in 2014 from Kelsay Books. His poems, fusing Igbo culture, European Classicism, U.S. Mountain West setting, and Hip-Hop influences, have appeared widely, most recently in IthacaLit, String Poet, The Raintown Review, Featherlit, Outside In Journal, Don't Just Sit There, Qarrtsiluni, and Leveler. He is editor at Kin Poetry Journal and The Nervous breakdown, founder and curator at the @ColoradoPoetry Twitter project.

Uche Ogbuji

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Eke na egwùrùgwù

My chi bent down and stroked my ear
From diamond stars in pearl-bed skies;
The whisper warmed my atmosphere
And filled the moon with my own eyes:

"Okeke, it's your day-namesake;
I've set you at the origin.
This is the moment to partake
Of all things now all things begin"

"I've schooled you at all times to look
For charms I labored long to strew;
Steep your ambitions in my brook,
Profound eke na egwùrùgwù."


  • Chi – Igbo concept of the self-spirit, similar in idea to the soul
  • eke na egwùrùgwù – one of those wonderful, wide-branching Igbo terms,
    meanings including halo and rainbow (python of many-colored charm)
  • okeke – a name given to males born on the first Igbo weekday,
    as was the author