Mother | Olabisi Abiodun Akinwale

Mother | Olabisi Abiodun Akinwale | Agbowo Art | African Literary Art

– Grief is the mother of voyages- Romeo Oriogun

& unlaying each layers of loss is rupturing a heart

before a door into silhouettes of dead memory. 

the day you died, a long elastic road brawled out 

of the spot the moon casted her furs on the earth,

it looks like where gloom scathes the song of a bird,

like a metaphor for a boy on exile with broken limb &

hollowed heart where shadows are stories fading to vapor.

it’s the road created to carry our grief beyond borders,

a road with strangers the lookalikes of our losses

& I’ve been here for twelve years wearing sunsets elegies,

crafting music in silences eloquent in your memories & 

gifting my body in bits to the wind holding your face in a glass jar.

sometimes, I walk into the past to the place your body

was lowered into the earth & mourn for the grasses 

your gestures have grown into, mourn for the stars

your love litters across night skies in June.

mother, if you ask me, I’ll say grief is a black boy

with mouth the shape of a dim room & an alto voice 

running across bones, touching antiques into music & lushness.

if you ask me, I’ll say grief is a walkway where footprints are 

stories of trees uprooted from the earth in the blackness of time.

I’ll say grief is a night that reeks of shadows & spectres 

like the night your body became an arid lantern on the shelve.

mother, I’ll say grief is everything you left when you left;

a numbed house, a box full of red taffeta dresses, 

tinted prayer points & poems culled from graveyards.


Olabisi Abiodun Akinwale

Olabisi Abiodun Akinwale is a Nigerian Poet & Writer, an explorer of grief, silence, beauty, loss & everything artful that meets the eye. A Best of the net Nominee, Best Student Poet- Federal University Lafia 2017, winner of Luma ART Poetry contest 2018, first runner up- Poets in Nigeria (PIN) poetically written prose contest 2020 among others. His works have appeared and forthcoming on Rising Phoenix, Agbowo Magazine,  Praxis Magazine, IceFloe Press, Woven Poetry, Tuck Magazine, Lunaris Review and elsewhere. Lives and write from a small town in Northwest Nigeria.


Twitter Handle: @OlabisiAkinwal1  

Facebook Handle: Olabisi Abiodun Akinwale.

Photo by Jr Korpa on Unsplash


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