Words for My Father

Baami,
For the times your words enveloped my fear,
Times your voice echoed courage into my soul,
And you became strength for my arms,
When the weight of the world became too heavy for me to bear,

Nna,
You built an image our lives could reflect on,
And carved words into pointers to guide us,
As we journeyed through the world,
You denied yourself of pleasures,
So we could afford the luxury we desired;
A price you’d pay as long as you had breath in your lungs,

How can I forget the touch of your rod,
A few lashes to straighten us when we went wrong,
How can I forget lessons enriched in respect, integrity and diligence,
Lessons drawn from the scenes of your life,
Lessons we could hold in the palms of our hands,
Lessons that moulded us into the men we are today!

Abba,
I choose to count my flowers while the sun still shines upon your face and the wind gently caresses you,
When the air in your lungs still warms up your chest,
And your heart still beats,
Today, I choose to celebrate you for being nothing short of a father!
Happy Father’s day Baami.


And to those Father who has gone beyond this world,
We choose to remember you and say you live on in hearts!

Olaoye Adeleye
(C) 2022

RESCUE

I found rags to cover up
I take the lonely road home
Trying to hold back tears
– Mum will be so angry –
I’m at the front door
And I can’t ring the doorbell
The door clicks open and Mum gasps
– What happened? –
– I don’t know –
I sob and drop to my knees
– Don’t worry honey, let me clean you up –
She picks me up and takes
Me to her bathroom, peels
The rags off me, picks out
The dying petals from my hair
And cleans off the ashes from
My body. She gently sponges
Me and shampoos my hair
I let out the tears
– I’m so sorry Mum –
– It’s okay honey, you’ll be fine –
I nod
– I love you, you know that right? –
I nod
When she is done, I look at
The bathroom mirror and touch
My face. I see the glow come into
My eyes, I smile and clean off my tears
– I love you –

IfiokAbasi Okop
© 2019