Burrows – A Poem by Abdulkareem Abdulkareem


For Jude Anuoluwa

After a body sinks into a burrow of death,
our lips part open like a fissure
& birth a cascade of threnodies flying out like birds,
from the tunnel of mouths, our face— a firmament birthing
a downpour of tears,
the walls inside a house shows us the scribble
portraying how a boy dragged
himself into an ocean & floated away like a twig,
that a boy becomes a traitor to his body begging
death to build him a bungalow in the body of his scythe—
even at death’s refusal
he offers himself to the ground by seeking
greener pastures at the mouth of a knife,
I won’t forget how an inferno that consumed a bungalow,
next time I want to learn to say stop, not death, not death.
Let it be known that nobody offers themselves
to grief like the tiny fishes offering themselves to a whale,
next time, Jude, I hope you’ll learn how to walk into an inferno
& stride out of it with your skin covered in Abraham’s flesh.

Abdulkareem Abdulkareem (he/him) is a Nigerian writer, he studies Linguistics at the University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Nigeria. His works appear/forthcoming on Poetrycolumn NND, Shallow Tales Review, Brittle Paper, Ice Floe, Rigorous, Second Chance lit, Olney, WFW Review, Sledgehammer lit, Salamander ink, Afro literary magazine, Lunaris,  Kissing Dynamite & elsewhere. His poem was shortlisted for the top 20 poems of the Nigerian Students Poetry Prize (NSPP) & he is also a member of The Undefined. He tweets @panini500bc. Instagram panini_500bc

Banner Art: The Storm, a VISPO by Robert Frede Kenter (c) 2021. Twitter: @frede_kenter, IG: r.f.k.vispocityshuffle.

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