Dear Ẹniọlá
Odemakin Taiwo Hassan
Ankara fabric pattern

Dear Ẹniọlá

Odemakin Taiwo Hassan

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  • Poetry
Narrated by

ọmọ kìí bápèlé ìyá rẹ̀ kó ṣaṣo ró

       a child doesn't see her mother's footprints only to derail from them

one day, you'll remember these exact same words,

      how like seeds, your mother spewed them out on your soil.

& the breeze that day was a cushion for your body

    with the walls of your house making sure they're balls into your net.

your memory will picture her bright ankara wrapper,

      how they perfectly captured your essence - a ripe fruit in many eyes.

she'll tell you about the  birds that will set their sights on you,

      the same way they hovered above her when she was in your light.

I'm certain, your lips will move, they'll form a smile,

     with thoughts about how her tone rose on certain phrases

               & fell on others.

these words, you'll hold firmly like a wristband - small yet conspicuous,

     then time will make it a hijab, then, a dress, then your skin.

you'll make yourself a Sunday, these words, into a church

       & no soup you prepare in life, won't have a dash of them.

Ẹniọlá, one day, you'll remember your mother engraved your name

       into the essence of these words,

                for the world to see your wonders wander.

& that, one day, you'll also spread these  exact same seeds

             on the soils of the beautiful souls you'll beget.

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Odemakin Taiwo Hassan

Taiwo Hassan is a Nigerian student, poet and writer. His works have appeared or forthcoming in Best New African Poets Anthology,, Kalahari Review, The African Writers Issue 1.2 and Brigette Poirson Poetry Contest anthologies. When he's not writing, he's either listening to music or watching a TV series.

more in this issue
Smiling Gbari woman with clay pots
Gbari Women Pottery Village
TSOL, Ite Earthenware, 11th Studio
  • Documentary
It Ain’t Easy Being a Blackman
Kyle Smith The Maniacal Menace
  • Spoken Word
Illustration of clouds
Damilola iyiola
  • Fiction
go to issue vi

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