The Spoor

By Dennis Odhiambo

Finally,
she went silent and still.
Those eyes!
Tearless, yet crying,
hunted for mercy.

I stood rooted on her;
she was weary,
emaciated with hunger and pain.
Those feeble eyes,
haunted me!
And from the gaze,
she was a bag of bones.

She went still,
slacked, and then went empty,
staring unblinkingly
as her rheumy and sunken eyes
ate my heart out
and skinned me alive,
not ready to let me off the hook!

I advanced towards her
and plonked by her side,
on her death-bed,
as psychic tears flooded my lecherous eyes;
I felt culpable
for stabbing her in the back,
for sending her to the grave.

I felt her soft and scorching touch;
I was anguished,
as her hands grew cold
like a dog’s nose.
I watched the light fade from her eyes
and exhaled what was left of my sanity:
all was on me
for bartering her life away
to this chronic and incurable malady.

Β© 2022 Dennis Odhiambo
All rights reserved.

Meet the writer.

Dennis Odhiambo is Kenyan. He is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree programme in Education (Arts), English and Literature, at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST) located in the Western Province Kenya. He has been writing poetry since high school and draws his inspiration from reading the works of renowned poets such as Jared Angira (Kenyan) and the Late Langstone Hughes (American). He currently runs a website where he showcases his writing skills.

Editor’s note: In this descriptive poem, Dennis uses imagery and diction, among other styles, to sensibly potray the persona’s feeling of guilt over infecting his beloved with “this chronic and incurable malady” and miserably watching her die.

The title of the poem too is symbolic to this feeling. The term spoor, according to Oxford Learners Dictionary, refers to a track or smell that a wild animal leaves as it travels. In this case, the malady is taken for a roaming wild animal who leaves behind an indelible feeling of guilt as it moves from one victim to another in a connected chain, devouring each of them.

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57 Comments

  1. Jane Aguiar says:

    Sad but powerful poem, Dennis.πŸ‘πŸ‘

    Liked by 4 people

    1. It’s my pleasure getting such powerful and encouraging comments. I’m very humble. I honestly appreciate your kind words.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Jane Aguiar says:

        I like to read poems and I found pleasure in reading you, so I encouraged. You deserve it, dear

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Stick in touch. I look forward to keeping you entertained by more! I’m much humbled.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Jane Aguiar says:

        Yeah sure, dear. I will be in touch with you ☺️

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Amazing poem. Wonderful. Thanks for sharing.πŸ’•πŸ™πŸ’•

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Wow, that’s awesome. I’ll keep up with the spirit. I’m much humbled by your encouraging words Grace.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. So nice to hear that.πŸ’•

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Appreciate you!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. πŸ’•πŸ™πŸ’•

        Like

    2. Thank you many times, Grace. I’m glad you liked it. πŸ’–πŸ’–

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I sure did.My pleasure.πŸ’•

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Derrick Molali says:

    This is a good work, neat and clear writing indeed. I feel encouraged by what you’re doing here, Lamittan. Thumbs-up, Dennis, for such a skillful and fascinating poem.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hey Derrick, I’m extremely impressed by your stunning comment. It keeps me yearning for more! I’m humbled by your kind words.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Ever so grateful, Derrick. Blessings to you πŸ™

      Like

  4. Jeffry Thompson says:

    What a thrilling and breathtaking piece! The Spoor is an indication of how a writer’s imaginations can be diverse and interesting. I enjoyed, lil brother. Always a pleasure seeing what you do here. Good work, Odhiambo. Stars all the way.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Hey Thompson. I’m much humbled by your encouraging words. It’s my pleasure hearing such motivating words from you. I’m humbled!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Jeffry Thompson says:

        Welcome. I tip off my hat for you. Keep writing, son.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I’m much humbled. Appreciate you!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Daphny Aqua says:

    This poem is a beautiful tragedy, it is sad but I have a great pleasure reading it. Love the conviction of the poem. Kudos to you both, keep up the amazing work Lam. πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I’m much humbled by your kind words Daphny. Appreciate you!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Daphny Aqua says:

        You’re most welcome! πŸ€—πŸŒΈ

        Like

    2. Many thanks to you dear Daph, your motivation is always highly appreciated and welcome. πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸŒΊ

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Daphny Aqua says:

        You’re most welcome Lam! You my friend are an inspiration. πŸ’–

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Lots of gratitude to you, dear. You too are an inspiration to me, in many ways. πŸ’–πŸ€—

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Daphny Aqua says:

        I am extremely glad I could be, thank you so much. πŸ’–πŸ₯°

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Indeed!!! My pleasure πŸ™ πŸ₯°

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Daphny Aqua says:

        πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

        Liked by 1 person

  6. James Gitau says:

    Such a wonderful expression of love, fear and guilt. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re most welcome James!

      Like

    2. Thank you so much, schoolmate. Hoping you’re fine on the other side of these valleys (remember?) πŸ€—πŸ’–

      Like

  7. Wise Hearted says:

    I felt like I was watching this poem being lived out. I was glad I wasn’t though.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Oh dearie, ain’t that so charming of you to say! I’m glad it sounded real to you. Thank you always. 😊

      Like

  8. Mike U. says:

    Such a deeply moving, visceral piece, Dennis. Emotional and painful and written with such skill and care. You’re an immensely talented poet. What a wonderful piece. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’m humbled by your kind words. Looking forward to serving you more of your taste. Keep in touch!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Looking forward to serving you more of your taste. Keep in touch!

      Like

    3. Oh Mike, thank you in a big way for taking time to read and leave such a heart-warming compliment. I’m pleased you enjoyed this wonderful poem by Dennis.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Ingrid says:

    Such a powerful poem! Thank you for sharing πŸ™

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, charming Ingrid. I’m glad you liked this, dear.πŸ’– πŸ™

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I love this piece and particularly enjoyed the literary devices employed by the poet.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh wow, thank you so much for you kind remarks, for sacrificing your precious time to read, dear. Glad to see you again! Such an honour. πŸ’–πŸŒŸπŸ€

      Like

      1. You are welcome.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. I’m much humbled by your kind words.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Jaya Avendel says:

    Beautiful! Alive with grief, so packed with emotion; multi-faceted and relatable.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you many times for your heart-warming compliment, Jaya. I’m glad you enjoyed this, dear. πŸ€—πŸ’•

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Navin says:

    Beautifully written, Dennis…thanks for sharing, Lamittan ✨

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Many thanks to you for reading and leaving such a kind and thoughtful comment 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Navin says:

        You’re very welcome πŸ’«

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Isackokothochieng says:

    Fascinating poem indeed.
    Keep up the good work Dennis. πŸ‘
    Looking forward to more of your creative works.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dennis says:

      I’m humbled by your kind words of encouragement. Hopefully I’ll serve you more, perhaps to your taste πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Dennis says:

      Stay in touch, you can as well visit my web, for more pieces…..

      Liked by 2 people

  14. Wow, what a gutteral heart wrenching piece shared Lamittan! πŸ’–

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Many thanks, my dear Cindy. M glad you enjoyed. πŸ’–πŸ’–

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re soooo welcome! πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

        Liked by 1 person

      2. πŸ’–πŸ₯°πŸ’β€

        Liked by 1 person

      3. πŸ’–πŸ’–

        Liked by 1 person

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