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Voices and Verses

National Poetry Month: “on power” By Ayokunle Falomo

The Houston poet reads a poem about the power of a voice.



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Poet Ayokunle Falomo

In this sound portrait, we meet poet Ayokunle Falomo. He talks about jotting down poems on everything from his hands to receipts, and the way in which his job as a school psychologist influences his writing. He reads his poem, "on power."

Ayokunle Falomo is a Nigerian, a poet who uses his pen as a shovel to unearth those things that make us human, a TEDx speaker, an American, and the author of kin.DREAD and thread, this wordweaver must! He and his work have been featured in print (Local Houston magazine, Glass Mountain) and online (The New York Times, Houston Chronicle, Hive Society, Squawk Back, Pressure Gauge Press). His work has also led him to venues and stages around and outside of Texas.


on power

if a statement about power
is to be a tree & i speak

of how powerful a voice is i know

there’ll be a question hanging
like a noose around one of its

branches waiting

for a neck to welcome
inside its endless loop


This poem is reprinted with permission by the author.

Music used: Rêverie by Claude Debussy (excerpt) and Prelude in D-flat major, op. 11, no. 15 by Alexander Scriabin (excerpt) from Timothy Hester: The Classical 91.7 Sessions; two Elliot Carter tributes (excerpt) by Jeffrey Mumford from through a stillness brightening.

To learn more about this series, go here.

Catherine Lu

Catherine Lu

Senior Content Producer & Announcer

While growing up in Chicago and Houston, Catherine’s love for art, music and creative writing was influenced by her teachers and parents. She was once concertmaster of the Clear Lake High School Orchestra and a four-time violinist of the Texas All-State Symphony. A graduate of the University of Chicago, Catherine...

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