Tag Archives: Ayomide Festus

Ocean stories

On the first day of a leap year when our fingers sank into hot sands at the coast, a fisherman was burned at the stake for rocking his boat & paddling it backwards. I begin the day by throwing blueberries … Continue reading

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Come to the waters

a petal opens up into the arms of one april morning. it was my father, calling me to come to the waters to drown in his breath. i forgot to begin this poem with a eulogy, a death song of … Continue reading

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Funeral blues

at his funeral, i invoke a prayer as i pour a bottle of dry gin into the nile—like    memories, like rusty scars peeling off a vintage foot—like tongues, lining       with smoke & whispering piercing tones, i search for the tears … Continue reading

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Dust

a forlorn bird, brown eyes, dark-winged, falls from the sky. whiffs of loss spread across its beak, some of it good. a minute of stillness, & then it dies. my father passes away in the skin of a falcon. once, … Continue reading

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Faraway

(after “Dim” by SYML) Bàámi, forgive me this one last time, for before this letter,   was a lineage wiped out by a             raging storm. before the storm, a troubled ghost, howling in & out of a graveyard & before the ghost, … Continue reading

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My mother washes her grief ashore

a flower grows in a dark room where my father’s body finds a resting place. everything around me is fading & the way to keep a body dry is to set it on fire. i wake up into an empty … Continue reading

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A test for absence using my father & a wild cat as case study

(after Nome Emeka) there is a strange figure limping outside a vacant room: fickle, volatile. ahead, are wild cats [Xx] in motion, huffing & running into each other—behind, are shadows [Yy] that stand in batches; two projections against a rough … Continue reading

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Genesis

(i) I was created from dust            into a garden—tall creatures with brooding eyes. an ancient man with sad gazes stared at me.      he said before my fortune was a bag of grief; sacred things that command the feet            of still men.      once, at night, … Continue reading

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Transition

Once, at night      a nursing mother                                                 breastfeeds her newborn: her hands dissolves into a language & a voice whispers                                                             between her thighs             then she folds back into loneliness as though crawling from mouth to spine.                   every time the sun      breaks                               through the … Continue reading

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A brief history of absence

outside my body, a feral creature screams into the wild             a map leads her astray—a modicum of lips. grief, scattered like remnants of woodsmoke, cast a shadow             against her skin—a short partitioning of silence to burn at night, i must … Continue reading

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