Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto - Poetry
a house so cramped God could barely squeeze in
by Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto
...put fire in a home,
it becomes the home.
1 a bang races you downstairs to find mother, with patches of red, before
the sink. father sits on the dining table, a bottle of alcohol dangles in his
burning blood and fists. 2 words between them hover around
the house. some bear voice-less letters: long pins inside a tender
throat. some bear faces of boys and girls who look at you from the inside
of a box full of forlornness and loneliness. 3 you try to play with them.
4 you try to show them your bagpack full of mended toys. 5 mother finds
out that the house walls now ojụjụ your Lego and toy soldiers. 6 she walks you
into the room and puts you in bed and says you should hold hands with
your shadow. 7 that it is safer. 8 she does not want you to see how much
she has bled. the scars she has covered with silence. her torn clothes she has
stitched with birds’ feathers. 9 and how much of father she has washed off her body.
10― reminds of a poet I think said: Augustina’s body was a house so cramped
God could barely squeeze in. 11 each time you look into mother’s eyes
you wonder how much of her is gathered inside the sink’s pipes.