Today you took me back to a place I was glad I left. To a time where my footing wasnt sure and my ground was sinking.
Your words reminded me of a quick sand that almost swallowed me up before I grabbed onto my anchor.
I was happy to find my ballast,
A rock that won’t let me fall.
A point so high I was in cloud nine,
To live my dream as reality.
Yet you took that away from me, drowning me in a well of insecurities,
Why would this ghost step out of your mouth to haunt me?
Why would an angel break my heart?
Shattering to pieces what you built.
Opening closed wounds
Leaving me to bleed your words of love and comfort
Loosing the battle with your thunderous silence.
I want to go back to my safe haven
To where you hold me whole and envelop me in the security of your arms.
Don’t let me drown sweet angel.
Too broke to have an opinion so I am moving on from me.
My sacrifices and changes are naught
You won’t get past the me you knew and think you know.
You define me by the moment you meet me.
I am nothing to you but her who clings to sleep and who is lazy and has a thousand and one excuses for being exactly that.
My truths are not worthy in your court of conclusions.
I am not up for trail but the jury is out and I am guilty
My revolution won’t be found in your opinions of me
I have tried to be the me you seem to want me to be.
You unravel me with a single thought and word.
You wound and you undo all I thought I had built and walked away from.
I end up being the me you think you knew.
I am moving on from you.
I am becoming numb and my tears are emptying.
I get exhausted and broken when you constantly remind me of how I can never please you.
I am never good enough.
I have craved your approval. Bent over like a branch every which way to accommodate you.
I am cold.
You thrust me into the frost and I can’t break free. I call out but no ones there to answer.
I am starting to turn into a watering pot and I don’t like this part of me you’ve unleashed.
I have forgotten to live for me.
I scrape hours of the night to unwind and be me.
My days are slow and they drag and it’s still the same me I get to live with.
The me who was happy to have taken a million steps only to have you destroy that believe with a simple’that’s why you are fat and eat and sleep and are lazy’.
I work hard to be a better person who isn’t selfish and I can’t remember the last time I did something that was just for my pleasure with no one else but me to benefit and enjoy.
Yet I am she who is selfish.
I am too broke to have my own opinions and I have spent them all in my book of thoughts and hurt so I am moving on from me, I am moving to a person I like and can live with.
My heart hurts too much from all the band aids I have placed.
I need to heal.
I still bleed from it
Do you recall it?
The cuts along my heart
Never self-inflicted neither deliberate.
Yet they still ooze from constant abuse
The ridges of the wounds form your signature and the scars a tattoo of your name.
Can you still smell it?
The pungent smell of rot
Can you taste it?
Do you remember its metallic taste as you bit into my soul and sunk your teeth into my core taking with you pieces well-hidden and baring them for all to see
Can you hear it?
The beats you forced into submission and rhythm with your constant attack on my senses till my heart beat in tune with yours and all my emotions became a Symphony of your whims.
My deeds a tentative plea
My actions a reflection of your mood
And I recoil at the thought it’ll be less than perfect; off beat
Can you still feel it?
That seizure that tells you we’re connected.
Others have butterflies and sparks
But we’ve felt deeper, known deeper,
Currents of electromagnetic waves
We ignite and we combust
Can you see it?
The blood from our wounds as we hurt. It trickles down slowly as we sign on the ridges of a fresh wound, clothing in anticipation of the healing that’s sure to come.
But for now it seeps.
This is a guest post.
My childhood was really interesting and full of fun. I was born into a large family. My father had married and divorced several women before he met my mother and as a result, I had a few older half siblings. This made growing up a lot of fun for me because it was always a full house and there was never a dull moment. We lived in a very big building with lots of flats, a few of which my father leased out to tenants. The compound was also very large with plenty of space for playing around. Another factor that contributed to the fun was the presence of domestic helps. We had different maids come and go, each with a different cultural background. This gave us the opportunity to be exposed to different games and folktales from all over the country. Some of those maids were stern and unfriendly but most of them were very relaxed and loved to play as much as we kids did. My early years were filled with funny events and occurrences due to all the influences around. I am going to share a story about one of such occurrences. I call it “chicken drama”.
I have already stated that my mother was not the first and only woman my father married. This always put her on edge because in this part of the world, if you had step-children, that could mean serious trouble for you. Nothing you ever do will be right in the eyes of your neighbours and acquintances. Every little act of discipline would be perceived as maltreatment of the children and you could easily be branded a wicked step-mother; like the one in Cinderella. Anyway I digress. Back to the story. The main issue that made my mother uneasy was the fact that the mothers of those children, although they were not living in the same house with us, might want to harm her and her kids. That is also a common occurrence in this part of the world. This fear of being harmed made my mother to become very prayerful and “spiritual”. This spirituality was further fueled by the church we attended then. We were made to believe that the devil had so much power and we had to stay awake and pray in the middle of the night or witches would kill us in our sleep. My mother was always alert and concious of the fact that there were demons everywhere. Every unusual occurrence was caused by demonic activity. She was what we Nigerians call a “prayer warrior”.
This chicken drama began when one of our tenants started rearing chickens in the backyard. The hens laid some eggs which later hatched into really cute chicks. I was nine years old at the time and my baby brother must have been around four. We were really taken with the cute chicks. They were so fluffy and yellow, we decided that we simply must have them as pets; at least one of them. Our maid at the time, Fatima, was the most exciting, adventurous and mischievous help we ever had. She was very playful and was ready to go along with every silly idea I had so I approached her with a new one; to steal the tenant’s chicks. She eagerly agreed of course and reappeared shortly with a very cute chick in her hand, apologetic for being able to catch just one. We set up living quarters for the chick immediately. After pondering for a few minutes I decided to create a home for it in the top drawer of my dresser. That was one place I was sure my mother would never look. We made the chick comfortable in the drawer and left it open just a little bit, for some air to go in. I made sure the space wasn’t large enough for it to get out. I was so happy with our new pet and I actually thought we would be able to take care of it till it grew and was able to lay eggs. We fed it whatever we ate; we obviously didn’t have the slightest clue on how to rear chickens. My top drawer was filled with biscuits, strands of spaghetti, grains of rice and whatever food you can think of.
Our “pet” didn’t last with us for up to one week before the “chicken drama” occurred. It was a Saturday evening. We had just come back from a visit to the amusement park; mother, Fatima, baby brother and I. Someone foolishly left the drawer open, wider than usual, before we left for the park. The poor chick, after being locked up for so long, found it’s chance at freedom and jumped out. At that same moment, for some reason which I can’t remember now, my mother followed Fatima and I to my room and saw our wonderful pet. Now my mother is someone that overreacts a lot; she’s known to make a mountain out of a molehill and this made us to lie about a lot of things while growing up. As soon as she saw the chick she screamed, ‘Jesus! Who brought this chick here?’ The little person in my mind was running around frantically, thinking of what to do because I was so scared of what my mother would do to me if she found out we had stolen the tenant’s chick. However, on the outside I maintained my composure and calmly told her that I didn’t know who brought it. ‘So how did it get here?’, she asked. Again, I replied that I didn’t know. She immediately started binding and casting evil forces. She then called the errand boy, Patrick and asked him to take the chick outside and set it ablaze. The rationale for this was that if the chick was indeed a witch that changed her form, she would die in a very horrible way; being burnt alive.
Fatima and I looked on in dismay as Patrick took the chick, poured some kerosene on it and set it ablaze. I felt terrible as I watched the chick burn and I was convinced God was going to punish me for what I had done. It took me years to get over that incident and I eventually told my mother about it. She laughed and said she couldn’t even remember burning a chick. It’s something I laugh about now when I remember it but it wasn’t in the least bit funny then. I couldn’t sleep that night. I kept tossing and turning, thinking about what a terrible person I was. I had caused the execution of an innocent chicken.
I woke up to find you near
Standing by the head board grinning
Smiling that smile I love
Wearing your heart in your eyes, lips and essence.
I froze, not believing you are finally here
Screeching I jump into the embrace that’s all mine.
A scent that comes only in my dreams.
A hug I feel through the miles.
A look I’ve mastered between screens and wavelengths is mine for the taking here and now; by my head board.
A jolt of electricity from a touch I’ve come to forget sizzles and zaps me
My closed eyes startle open in shock and the only thing by my head board is the shadow of the moon and the harmattan that zapped me awake when my frozen fingers slid against the bed sheet.
This has become a habit but I am ever hopeful for the reality.
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