Grief, here is a song – Shitta Faruq Adémólá

Grief, here is a song

To you, grief is in a lover’s chest as a dove singing outside its shadow. Your father died when you were 8 and in a lower-class 4. Your mother’s song was a lullaby buried into the earth like roots. The earthing of a baby’s skin. You started to wear scars. You buried them with shovels that fit to bear your tears into shame. Shame is what you have always wanted to disguise beneath your tongue, although you couldn’t buy yourself the love a woman pins to her little son.

You knew how to become a man. The body is always levitating before its own salvation. You take a storm into your own mouth, unwind love from the mill in your throat. Whenever you tell her she is the poem you would love to write, she’d mock your skin, and whenever you tell her that without her in your life, it is like the sun without the light, the moon without the night, like the sky without the stars. You pray Simi would not blame you for borrowing her lines.

You walk around the street listening to Adekunle Gold’s Fame. The shore of your eyes gather debris of tears. The tears build for themselves, castles high enough to reach God’s armpit. You still remember how your father died, his corpse placed outside the flat you lived, like a log of wood: sympathizers deafening the neighborhood with loud wails. You remember your mother too; her skin cupping rhythms of anguish. Your sister, how she became a cheap food to street dogs, and your brother, a vehicle with no destination. You, too, turned into the songs of Brymo glowing fire from the backs of their tongues. Loss crumbles everything.

Your lover told you goodbye. Good-bye. The poems you had been singing into her ears didn’t work well since they lacked the strength to persuade. The pain you felt burning inside you is likened to a budding writer’s first rejection letter. But, this was more than a rejection letter. You poured yourself into the softness of the bed, drinking and smoking your revival into your body. That, perhaps, would make do with the fire in you.

That night, you saw your father’s spirit singing to you. You could hear the heat of your mother’s combustion telling you how a boy without a father danced, his steps failing to carry themselves. That night, you buried yourself in a parrot’s beak, plucked Meditations from the library. You read folly in the collection. It must have been Ayoola Goodness’s biography, too, like yours. The picture you were seeing was a boy smiling at death, singing threnodies as he married a thick rope with his dying neck.


Shitta Faruq Adémólá is a Late teen Nigerian Writer and poet eating and drinking water in his room in Nigeria. He has works and forthcoming in Parousia Magazine, Libretto Magazine, Nanty Greens, Eboquills, Mad Swirl, Ngiga Review, Communicators League and elsewhere. He is also forthcoming in Jalada Africa and The Trouvaille Journal. When he is not writing, he’s either admiring fair ladies or listening to Simi’s sweet voice. Say hi on twitter @Shittafaruqademola

Banner: A Dream Scape, a digital collage by Robert Frede Kenter

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