ARE YOU A GOOD CHILD? – A Poem by Salami Alimot Temitope


You are enjoying your wealth like you really worked for it:
You are also enjoying the luscious taste of wealth like strawberry.

You forsook your mother,
who carried you in her womb
where you found solace till you were birthed.
She carried you in her womb
in the rain and in the scorching sun, struggling to feed.

Your father took a river of tears from her before you were birthed.
He treated her like an object,
and left a pregnant woman to fend for herself.

You don’t know the pain of travail.
She birthed you with all her strength,
she was your umbrella,
that shielded you from the scorching sun and rain.

At night,
she fortified you from insects,
she always hid her tears and pangs from you,
and acted like a lioness.

She nurtured you like a plant is being nurtured:
from nursery to maturity stage and gave you a good education.

She’s your gardener and you are her garden.
Like a gardener takes care of a garden,
she made you what you are today.
If she died while carrying you in her womb, you wouldn’t exist.

Have you forgotten what made her heart bleed?
Memory isn’t a betrayal,
it keeps appearing in your mind.

She sailed you to greater heights,
and you neglected her.

Are you a good child?

Salami Alimot Temitope (she/her) is an emerging Nigerian writer, and currently a student of Lagos State University, Nigeria. Her works explores themes on life, grief, loss and family. Her creative works have appeared, or are forthcoming, in Native Skin Magazine, Olney Magazine, Brittle Paper, Arts Lounge, Nantygreens, Shortlisted in Brigitte Poirson Poetry Contest August/September, Kalahari Review, Pawners Paper, Nymphs, Nnoko Stories Magazine, The Hearth Magazine, Naija Readers’ Buffet and elsewhere. She says _hi_ on Twitter @lyma_lami.

Art: A detail from Night Walk, a pastel drawing by Robert Frede Kenter (c) (2022). Twitter: @frede_kenter.

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