The Blackened Pot

The blackened pot sits atop the flame

The yellow flame, unrefined and defiling

Defiling the silver coating, hiding the luster

The luster, the very essence of the pot’s beauty

Beauty now tainted, a surface that once shimmered

Shimmered with radiance, is now coated with soot

Soot, from too little oxygen to burn completely,

Completely, the wood glows blue- pure, preferred

Preferred, it burns the hottest.

The blackened pot sits atop the flame,

The yellow flame, despised and condemned

Condemned, nothing good expected from it

From it, we look only for ugliness and dirt

Dirt, because nothing that ugly can be useful

Useful it is- because from the blackened pot

Comes forth the white pap.


Author’s Note: Do you feel worthless? Useless? Weighed down by your past? There is still a lot of good inside of you. There is hope! Look inside of you and bring forth that treasure hidden inside!



11 thoughts on “The Blackened Pot

  1. Exceptionally Captivating and thought proking poem! This is one of your best yet Doc!
    I love this, I so love this!
    Many times we’ve scarred, and our past pulls us with such gravitational force that makes us stagger and fall back into despair of the past.
    This poem brings Hope, it brings light and it shows there’s a bright future, no matter how dark the past is…thanks Doc! More Ink to your Wonderful Pen!


  2. Wow! The sequential flow and arrangement of the lines in this piece is sizzling! As one line seemingly dies and is terminated via a particular word, that word experiences a ‘new birth’ in a new, subsequent line! This is a first Doc, its really pretty; very creative and you made it work absolutely! Awesome stuff! *laughing*

    The poem in itself brings to life that evergreen Yoruba proverb of a white, pure pap; emanating from a blackened earthen pot which I find pretty ironic! The truth though, the beauty of the blackened pot’s not in its lustre; its in that darkened state in which its beheld, cause only then can it achieve that purpose, of bringing forth white pap! Its lustre will rob it of its true purpose, as it’d just be good and appealing to the eyes, achieving nothing! A great Irony, I find this! LOL

    Finally, things are not always what they seem! The need to look beyond the surface arises, so as to be well informed and avoid making snap judgments! The pot’s blackened, big deal; look within it and discover what treasures; as you mentioned, lies within!

    An inspirational piece, mighty uplifting and soothing! Thanks for writing and sharing! Cheers!


    1. Nice perspective Yemie. It is only by being blackened can it fulfill its purpose of making the white pap…interesting.
      Also, to not be too hasty to be dismissive. Sometimes there is more to people and things than we can see from the outside. Thus, we shouldn’t be too in a hurry to judge! Perhaps that should guide us concerning our leaders?

      Back to the lustre, I doubt many would find a blackened pot attractive enough to buy from the mall. The glory of any woman’s kitchen is the glistening of the silverware and cookware. I remember as a child, we used smooth sand to wash the outside of the pots to get the lustre back.


      1. Pots have their different purposes spelt out! No matter how much you scour and scrub that particular one used for the making of Pap, overtime; it’d lose its shine and glow completely, which isn’t bad as long as the pap gets produced from it! Plus, don’t also forget that ‘The Blackened Pot’ itself is also connotative here, used as a literary imagery to drive home a point! Whether connotatively or literally, the end product’s all that eventually matters and sticks! Lol

        On the issue of leaders, that’s another kettle of fish! It will be well with Naija! *sigh*


        1. Yemie says it don’t matter if the pot shines or is blackened, what matters is that the pot is doing what it’s been created to do! The glory is not in the appearance or the lustre, but in the results!


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