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The Poet Recounts His Father’s Death | Pèlúmi Sàlàkọ́

The Poet Recounts His Father’s Death | Pèlúmi Sàlàkọ́

I bent into my father’s face,
His eyes, small and brittle like the pea

The harmattan’s breeze must have
Saturated his pale cheeks

I peered into my father’s eyes,
But I didn’t know that 

The sulk in his eyes is the
Day’s owner appearance to take inventory 

I didn’t understand that the sea in his
Eyes was departure

I imagine him shedding
His existence, slowly, like the snake 

Sheds his skin. The little boy he was floating
Far away from reach, beyond equilibrium, 

And his history preening just before his
Final glance and breath

Osan ja, orun dopa —the string gulfs,
The bow becomes a plaything

We walk through the pain of detachment
And hollowness of absence that caved in us

There’s a great feast
In the grim reaper’s court 

And a great sadness in the land,
From which death has plucked this star. 


Pelumi Salako Agbowo Art African Literary ArtPèlúmi Sàlàkọ́ was born on a Sunday in January. He writes from North Central, Nigeria, where he studies. His writings have appeared or are forthcoming in Jacarpress, Ngiga Review, and elsewhere. He co-edits the Zango Review. He tweets @Salakobabaa.


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