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#Inktober2019, Poems, Short Stories,

Inktober – Day 21: Treasure

Only a few things in life can mean everything and nothing at the same time. You are one of those things.
Ours is a complicated relationship for I claim to love you but I constantly give you away but pray you find your way to me.
I cannot hold you in my arms for longer than necessary. Life knocks at my door and demands for your services time after time and thus you have travelled more than I ever will. From the beggar’s plate on the sidewalk to the baker’s cash register. You make your way through the men in the alleys who beat and rape you then transfer what remains of your soul to the market woman who suffocates you between her breasts. There, you heal and foster warmth but you’re forcefully weaned and sold to the girl who stains you with drops of hot oil from the akara she sells. The bus driver holds you greedily at night and you are dispensed into the fuel attendant’s pocket the next morning.
Bound by oath and string, you serve your new masters; in chains; with your brothers. They surround you in a circle and force you to fight – to commit incest or die. You survive the brawl and you are cleansed of your filth and sins. In mint clothes, you stand out, your value and strength increased by your new allies and numbers.
Your new masters turn servants, take you to your hotel room – our hotel room. The receptionist hastily beeps me. I see how many friends you’ve brought with you. A smile runs across my face.
Ours is a forbidden love. I appreciate your multiple partners and invite them into my bed. You satisfy my hunger and my innermost desires.
I find that I am sane without you.
I lose myself when I find you.
I am unfaithful to you as you are to me.
They say I can never make you stay for longer than you want to.
I say I can. I say I want to.
And so tonight, as we’ll lay on our backs, strength spent, with our faces facing the clear night’s sky, I will roll over and ask you to love me unconditionally.
For one more night.
On every other night.
Through all my nights.
#Inktober2019, Poems, Short Stories,

Inktober – Day 13: Ash

Today at church, the pastor asked us to place our hands on any part of our body where we needed healing.

I placed mine on my chest and centred it where I could feel the loudest thumps from – my heart.

You see, our love was a bonfire. Everyday with you was like a ceremony inside me. There were drum beats of joy, butterflies fluttering and nestling in weird places; my entire system conspiring to excite me. It was magical.

The fire never ceased to burn. Day after day, we would fuel our wonder until we ran out of wood. Then I started to throw pieces of my clothing into the flames. I was going naked but I didn’t care. The fire was my warmth. The drums never stopped playing.

You were supportive of my sacrifice. You would sit next to me and fan my embers. The ignited passions were short-lived. The flames were thirsty and demanded to drink. I began to pour myself into it. Cups became gallons. Gallons flowed into drums. I was relentless. I gave until I had nothing left to give. The tempo of the drums had slowed down but the beat was louder than ever. It sounded like war.

The fire was growing cold. We needed coal. It was then I realised that you were still fully clad. You even had a helmet on. I became the fire and we were dying out.

I should have seen it coming. You walked away from us, complete and whole while the charred parts of me burned to ashes. The drums were speaking but I was too blind to listen.

It’s been months now but I can still smell the smoke. The stench of burning flesh, muscles and fat sizzling like grilled meat in an open fire.

The drums never stopped playing.

My heart never stopped beating.

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