In the shower, water driblets pop off
my wrists like sequins
& those that trickle, vein both arms
until I am licked clean by dryness,
bare as a plate. Failed again to rid
myself of it. Nothing washes off
a hushed voice stapled to the dermis.
Don’t you just
envy the serpents—
how letting go comes easy to them?
An adult one sheds its skin past
twice a year. Humans wait
seven years for the same
miracle, & when it happens we are
clueless, feel no different. Healing
is a game of forgetfulness, the abstraction
of wounds. I suppose it is easy to forget when
you have no hands to remind you of his
hands. No elbow to remind you of his
jab, not separate from the sore. The
more I wash, the littler I become, till all that is left
of me is nothing but his voice.
Pamilerin Jacob is a Nigerian poet whose poems have appeared in Barren Magazine, Agbowo, Poetry Potion, Rattle & others. He was the second runner-up for Sevhage Poetry Prize 2019. Author of chapbooks, Gospels of Depression, & Paper Planes in the Rain (Co-authored); he is a staunch believer in the powers of critical thinking, Khalil Gibran’s poetry & chocolate ice-cream. Reach him on Twitter @pamilerinjacob.
This entry appeared in The Memory Issue