we make do

We are sitting in a living room
smaller than what we are used to
The kitchen is a short L
with red pans and wooden spatulas
Horizontal shadow lines stretch across
reflecting the shutters in the night light
The zing of electricity leaves no room
for actual silence but we make do

We are islands away from our original home
Closer to the water than we are used to
but our jokes are the same. The same people
based, accent commanding stories of the
comings and goings of children and men
Of women who have nothing but their husband’s
names and post-baby bodies

The sky is getting darker, the room
a little cooler than when we began but
we are still taken by the stunning reflection
of people being people. Still hurdled over laughing
at what is left of our memories. There are only
little streaks of light seeping through the window now
but we make do. We always make do.

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Chasing shadows

Last night I caught your heart
travelling to where he once lived
Tiptoeing across the sidewalks
attempting to leave only shadows behind

I saw the silk ribbon
(that should have stopped you)
laying in the moonlight
A symbol of rebellion- the proof
that our hearts are the wildest
creatures to ever roam this earth

There is a whiff of you in the air
Heart thumping against your pride
Your out-breath still lingers
Like the smell of cheap alcohol

Three knocks and
a voice asking to know your name
Your silence yells into the wind
“You should not be here”

Take the day off, will you?
Tame what is left of your desires.

old home

it is the back
of my grandmother’s hands,
her veins,
the way they lean into
her skin, as if they cannot
remember what it means to
stand-alone.

it is the wooden
bench, mastering its balance
with a broken ankle,
weighed down by
the gossip and buttocks of
market women.

it is my grandmother
serving afang so thick
it could have only been
made with extra
love and a little water.

it is the mosquitoes
commencing choir
practice just before
we start to eat.

it is the burn
on our finger tips as
We dig into the fufu

it is the fireflies taking
photographs. It is

my father’s childhood home.