The saddest word in the language.
In any language.
Maybe one day my grandmother would return with the sweetest oranges she used to buy/ all cut up by love/ all offered with a smile that now only lives where orange exists/ maybe I’d follow her come here with an actual coming/ maybe I’d morph myself into the space between her and my mother and become cyanoacrylate/maybe I’d whisper into her ears, place your daughter’s head on your thighs, teach her how to bend earth with her feet, embrace her for half a hundred years of absence/ maybe I’d tell her to put out her cracked feet let me wash them/ I’d tell her that her hair of white is a field of moon glitter / then wring my small brain into finally realising her laughter is the ocean that I am/ maybe I’d tell her she smells of all the things I didn’t know/ richness/ stainless/history/ everywhere she carried her children with her/ even in the dark where she tongued them into the mouth of a god that would haunt my mother to death/ from the window, I’d watch her forget how to look at the back of her daughter when leaving again and again/ maybe I’d tell her each time, her daughter would cry in the passageway/ tears I picked like Kyoho grapes/ ripe from all parting/maybe I’d offer her an orange upon her return this time/ saying take all this little boy’s sweetness and smile too/ maybe the pool of grief turned shadow that followed her when she left would burn away / maybe I’d kiss her for the first time on that pale cheek peeling from aloneness/ with nose/ with teeth/ with chest as warm as pudding/ burying my whole face into her shrinking/ maybe death is the closest thing to love when there is no love.
The Days of Woodpecker and Salmon
It is July, the days of the woodpecker and salmon
the first time of the year
we sit in a cafeteria together,
beside the sea, beside tanned hands
in so close a space our laugh
pierce into the skin of doughnuts,
we cross pollinate thoughts
bumblebee to flower and backwards,
who sucks and who swallows,
we are one and the same thing,
you ask about the scar on my
chapped lips, then the stories behind
things diffuse into other stories,
inside the carbuncle of my chest
bleached from all those non-togetherness
all that sleep tucked away in phone lines:
I want you to ask more, ask me
why I look at you like a bat,
what daydreams ruin the shape of my head,
why I’m unpacking my eyes
like a suitcase, the invisible clothes
left on the third chair that seemed empty
but maybe you too are unpacking,
maybe you too slipped
a secret note inside the closet
of my ears, maybe I couldn’t hear them,
just maybe you ask where my heart’s spirit
leans and Jesus comes to make a man cry in
one eye and you shine in his other eye.
Poetry (c) Abiodun Salako
Image by Jorge Lujan from Pixabay
I was completely submerged in every line, that spoke of meanings inside meanings. Amazing work Abiodun!
This touched the very depth of my soul. In tune with my self, I touch with my grandmother in heaven.
This touched the depths of my very sincere soul. I tune with the words, in tune with my grandmother in heaven
This is a beautifully scripted poem. Touched my very soul.
A beautifully scripted message.
In Memoriam is so nostalgic. It’s a beautiful work.