I Don’t Want to Know WhatsApp

I generally avoid this app,
It goes against a lot that I learnt growing up,
Ticks are supposed to be positive reinforcement for the good things you do,
Not a cutting indictment just by virtue of a changed hue,
So what if they’re now blue?
Who made this the basis of our communication all through?
“I’m late to text because I had an assignment due,”
“I got a little distracted by the latest season of Dr. Who…”
Why should that make me have to rue not getting back to you?


In school,
These ticks were red and they never left us blue,
They were a tool,
They excited and incited, we sought them like food,
But now, they only make us wonder if it’s “too soon”,
“Oh my, I texted and she hasn’t replied, what should I do?”
Relax and think back to a time before this was all you knew,
Or tap into the human knowledge passed down for centuries to your innate sensibilities,
And realise that maybe, kinda, sorta, really, it’s all good in the hood.


Maybe I’m biased because I have experience with letters,
Those well-scripted, highly coveted and much-adorned pieces of paper I sent across county borders,
Hoping that their unsuspecting recipients would deem me worthy of a requited gesture.
Back then you had no choice but to wait and play it safe,
You had no right to a reply or any idea whether she had several from another guy; strafe,
So you held your breath not and prayed,
That she dug the dedix in the post-scriptum and — with her number — another paper would return…



But now look at us, so lost in the paste of distastefully being unable to wait,
Unable to reason beyond typing… and Last seen,
Heck! Why don’t you just ask how I’ve been and see,
Maybe a lot has just been happening and I’m not trying to be mean,
Life is full of vagaries, you should know, seeing as you only came back to vibing last week.


I’m yours impermanently over text,
Until you figure out that calling or meeting is best,

Evans Mbora Campbell
I Don’t Want to Know WhatsApp.


Looking through a Present Tense Lens

You’re here, I feel your skin against mine,
Your tears graze the layers of my heart so thin,
I have you with me now, much as I may not understand the how,
But you could be gone tomorrow.


I want to text you,
My boss just called though,
I will come through to your house after work boo,
But you’re gone even before half-past ten.


You said you wouldn’t be long,
I waited at the seat closest to the door,
Passed out and slid to the floor,
But when I finally heard a knock,
it wasn’t you it came from,
They handed me a letter with a face sullen,
Invisible blood on their uniform.


So I speak to you here like I never want to think of you there,
I tell you how I feel because I never want to say I did not share,
I lay it all bare, because when you do leave,
I want to know that I gave you everything, down to the last pieces of me,
And I would love if you could do that too,
But no pressure; we’re only two texts in,
My third one is coming through.



Yours in the now,

Evans Mbora Campbell
Looking through a Present Tense Lens