A Poem by Abdulrazaq Salihu

The Day My Father Died

We entered the day like ants
to holes, the sun roared and
cried and died, mother read
tales of survivors and clones.
Bleating goats became elders
in trance. Our aluminum fence
sang amapiano & arpeggio. We
have waited this day, dear God,
for our eyes to not tear, mother
orbed her children in sea tides
retreating as poems held in the
stomata of grapes and of apples.
Sing life into each other. We have
waited this day to be told that
dying is also living; roads that
lead a man to success can lead
him astray. My father’s roof
housed souls that only know
wailing. Outside, the sand took
in everything that the bandits
took, my father was the first to go.

Abdulrazaq Salihu is a Nigerian 16-year-old poet and Spoken word artist. He was the winner of most valuable contestant (male) at HIASFEST 2021. He is a member of the Hilltop Creative Arts Foundation. He has some of his poems published/upcoming in SHAGAZ anthology, an Indian Anthology that won fastest compiled anthology, Konya Shamsrumi Magazine, Christmas Tide, Waah re kisan, Stories from the Heart, Amulet Poetry Magazine, and more. On Instagram, follow: Abdulrazaq._Salihu.

Art: Gate, an image by Robert Frede Kenter (c) 2022. Twitter: @frede_kenter.

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