“When Your Father Never Closes His Mouth” by Adesina Ayobami Idris

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When your father wants to run his mouth
He comes to our shop and talks us to deafness.

We praised his psuedo tongue everytime he left
And he burnt us with more truths anytime he returns.

We had mastered the art of silence And learnt never to touch our mouth with water

As he chewed and vomitted everything that hooked his mind.

One time, he said his first car will be a 10-million-naira product And that Hummer is used for taxi in France I looked at his slippers and shook my head

For the poor thing had suffered earth ruins.

He swore on Ògún and Sàngó — Unmercifully ever ready to strike him — That Nigeria is the capital of Africa

And that poor men drive Bugatti in Asia.

He liked our product and we dished small smile Making silent prayers that he never bought one

For Òrúnmìlà is no more in town to help us with the fee.

Everytime he came, we wished he left closing his mouth But no, Obàtálá had created him with his mouth ajar And the key thrown to sea of words.

Ògún — god of iron
Sàngó — god of thunder
Òrúnmìlà — god of wisdom, knowledge and divination
Obàtálá — creator of human bodies

Osun-born poet Adesina Ayobami Idris is an undergrad of Social work at the University of Ilorin. His works have appeared on Barren Magazine, Minute Magazine, Peeking Cat Poetry, Nantygreens among others. He can be reached on Twitter via @adesinaayoi.

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