Image by Esther Vargas from Flickr. 

Inspired by the Western media coverage of the Dusit Hotel terror attack in Nairobi.

 

At the Dusit restaurant in Nairobi

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men slumped over tables, crowded

 

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with laptops and smashed plates, dead

from gunshot wounds.

 

This is now where your hands pick

what eyes consume. Our dead

 

displayed like a commodity. A spider

dead in its web, its dead body billowing

 

in the interlace. A body at final rest

weighs twice as much, I am sure

 

if offered the chance to see how

their body parades the news, bullet-ridden,

 

their sadness will be, too. Holding

it will feel like a small sun,

 

rolling through their skin. I am

touching the future with the tip

 

of my tongue like a snake, still the news

gives freely, but it rarely gives

 

a body in snow. Not that

it’s something I want to see,

 

but there is a comfort knowing all

corpses are the same, with all slates

 

of silence clipped to their cells.

A body like mine

 

isn’t worth a thing in life,

why should it in death?

 

 

About the Writer:

Saddiq Dzukogi is the author of Inside the Flower Room, selected by Kwame Dawes and Chris Abani for the APBF New Generation African Poets Chapbook Series. He is a recipient of the Othmer Fellowship from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he is studying Creative Writing. His recent poems have appeared in Kenyon Review, African American Review, Gulf Coast, Prairie Schooner, New Orleans Review, Best American Experimental Writing Series, and Verse Daily.