A Memory of a Man Drowned by the New Ways
I sit with my grandfather
While the half-moon illuminates through
The darkness of the night.
We chatter, like birds cherrypicking between cereals
With their beaks rummaging in our lane of thought
A memory to fill the gaping space
A blackness in our white dentition
Of the generation between us.
A night like this, with another half of the moon
Buried in the belly of the ravenous sky births
Scores of memories – a bit of us dead in the past,
Reincarnating in a form in the present.
We do have a picture of a shark opening his jaw
To house the drowning us in his belly for food:
A period to unseal a pulsating wound,
To seek survival in its yellowish pus.
“I wish he had traveled in a caravan just like me,” Grandpa muttered.
“Through the thickness of the forest, the heats
Of the sun, heading towards the Sahara;
Balanced on a gasping camel with the height of a pole,
Whose grooves, hardly heard like a mum, glide
Through the dry sand, throwing up ephemeral dust.”
“But he chose to travel in a car a’ van, ” I admitted.
“Through the smoothness of the ‘paved street.’
The humidity of the air conditioner, touring the world;
Speeding, the car letting out wind & noise like a volcano,
Until he wheeled himself into a sea to abide with fish.”
We meant my father ( his son),
The gaping generation between us.
Rasheed Ayinla Shehu (RAS) writes from Kwara. He is an undergraduate of English and Literary Studies, University of Ilorin, where he majors in Literature. His works have appeared or forthcoming in the Kalahari Review, the Fiery Scribe Review, the Stripes Magazine, Unilorin Iserh Chronicles Magazine.