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Photo credit: The Dark Veil. Source: Flickr.

Prayers are symphonies of lamentation
That begin from my mother’s lips,
Like a bird beginning a day’s death,
With a humming song of woes.
She says she fears for the devils
Whose tongues carry the blood
Of homeless lads on their lips,
Like an eagle clawing a chick.
Every sound her palms clasp
Carry the voiceless consonants of unarticulated problems—
That drop from the sagging tit of her strength.

We live in a city where fear is a bud of roses
Sprouting from our hearts,
And the dying beauty of those hibiscuses
Marks the spot of my father’s death.
Mother fears that today would be
A testament of unbending tears,
Like smoke marking a pot of war.
We are children of just six and seven,
Moist like smoke from weeping wood—
We carry voices of prayer on our lips
As the morning dew begins the shower of a fearsome day.
The earth swells of our father’s graves—
For his head and arms live far from his fat belly.
This was how dying roses mark the spot of war and grave.

 

 

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About the Author:

PicsArt_1490552949167Jonathan Otamere Endurance is a poet who loves simple but effective works of art. He is a student of English and Literature at the University of Benin, Benin City. He has his works on many online literary journals which include: PIN QUARTERLY JOURNAL, THE KALAHARI REVIEW, and ELECTRONIC PAMPHLET.

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I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

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