A way for those who find home
no one writes an elegy for his own home,
only if its belly holds fire
like this one, always on its knees seeking for peace.
every day begins with a new war,
they say it’s the way for those who find home.
the first corpse I had seen was my father’s
when the bullets managed to recognize him for the first time,
he lay like a cross before our house with his nostrils bleeding.
here, to see your father’s corpse is bad, but to hear
it buried behind you is worse,
hadiza, somewhere away from home, sits on her veranda bringing
her father’s letters to her nose to smell home off it,
stains her lips with tears.
I try to find a metaphor for a home
that pours its own people into the mouth of bullets,
nan, inda muke gudu daga*.
* nan, inda muke gudu daga- Here, where we are running from.
Inside my neighbor’s room
every day there’s the news of a child who escapes
into absence, buried inside someone’s living room.
every morning, before the school bus arrives, a mother
squats & whispers into the ears of her son,
if a stranger walks up to you, run.
here, my neighbor seems to be the only person
I would laugh with in the dark, before
I would say only strangers keep the body of a child for concoction.
today, I walk by, & his room stinks of a decaying body,
even my neighbor too.
Poetry: Adedokun Ibrahim Anwar
Image: Tengyart on Unsplash