Story Telling

Esther Chizaram Ngele celebrates mothers in “Heavyweight Champion” (Poem)

Clara my precious stone, Alice the friend I will always have. Ngele the brook my soul drinks from.

My first breath was yours, the gods planned it.

My first bed the rose petals of your thighs.

‘Beginners class C’, my Sunday school teacher.

‘Adulting’ 411 she still teaches.

Her aura, the charisma of a goddess.

I’m moved when she moves.

Extraordinary grace, gentility and power well intertwined.

Virtuous in all her ways. Indeed, a tree planted by the river’s side.

Throwing my weight on hers, she stands balanced.

‘I don’t know how’ all she did was speak.

Her prayers, my shield. 

Her knees, her power. It’s the grace of God.

If I’m going to walk the miles, I might as well strut. 

Graceful even with the most difficult task.

Like a heavyweight champion, you are truly a gift.

Beauty and elegance the DNA you’ve passed on.

I’m so blessed, the gods chose you for me.


Agbara nwanyi! with a glance she searched out my soul.

Dipped my head deep into the spring that I may see clearly. 

Showed me purpose before style.

Calling me by my essence that I may never forget.

With each landing of the rod heavy on my back. I’m fortified.

Each stroke a thunder, the lighting my lessons. I’m grateful.

Clothed in fire I embrace her and I’m immediately soothed.


Oh the high expectations for your return.

Kpo! kpo! kpom! Our eyes lit up.

Your fragrance so refreshing, we hug you so tight.

There’s Joy and relief in your presence, so I must tell you everything I endured in your absence. ‘Last-born habits’

Those still stare in public and I act aright

You walk in, I straighten up.

Your eyes mystified yet filled with passion.


The glory of your essence can never be defined.

Taught me love and compassion for others but never to be swayed by them.

Taught me all I need was the grace of God and not man to make my marks.

I’m destined for ruin without your blessings.

Watched you win with my father with bonds of love and peace.

No wonder he called you Clara! You are far more precious!

The mastery you display, the wisdom of a goddess.

The warmth of motherhood; thank you for giving your all.

You are simply divine!

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