- What do we call a moon that hit the sun
in the face at the hour of eight in the morning?
Ans. An egg doesn’t just get black /
A cowry doesn’t just get brown / Honey
doesn’t just get bitter. My smile is
a window into a room of grief,
into the mouth of a bat/owl
calling out on a miracle – Day Moon.
I gather forty-one stones and
lynch them against the sky as if to
create a hole so father may fall back
into my world, into my dreams.
This poem is the handle of a torchlight
searching for father’s voice.
I spent the wee hour of the day
undoing his demise, imagining
the shape of his smile and tracing
out his lips on the tiles of his grave:
I saw a moon. I saw a sun gazed at
through the body of a gentle water.
- When a mirror gets broken, its pieces are usable.
But how do we ditch an earthed mirror?
Ans. I hold the handle of father’s door
and pour into a room filled with solitude.
The sharpness of horns from fleeting cars
keep breaking the silence, intermittently.
Let’s make an assumption that a car
is bringing him back to life.
Let’s make an assumption that he would
answer to greetings rendered beside
his grave / inside his room.
Let’s make an assumption of recreating
him into existence; start with his smile,
start with writing out his litanies, start
with his lullabies for his thirty-year old
son, start with the prologue to his
stories, tales and folklores, start
with reassembling his rosaries
on his praying mat. Wear his cap and
jalbab – write “father” on its sleeves.
Taofeek Ayeyemi (fondly called Aswagaawy) is a Nigerian lawyer and writer. His works have appeared or forthcoming in Lucent Dreaming, Ethel-zine, The Pangolin Review, The Banyan Review, the QuillS, Modern Haiku, Akitsu Quarterly, contemporary haibun online and elsewhere. He won Honorable Mention Prize in 2020 Stephen A. DiBiase Poetry Contest, 2019 Morioka International Haiku Contest and 2nd Prize in 2016 Christopher Okigbo Poetry Prize.