What is Love? III: A Cage

a_bird_in_a_cage_by_sebowebo-d5esu3r

“A Bird in a Cage” | Sebastian Gomez 

Dear Love,
why don’t you love me?
Why do you like to punish me?
You possess and drain my strength,
but you let the other go scot-free.
When I am in you
and when I am not,
when you are in me
and when you are not,
I am always lonely.

Advertisements

Wounded Healer III

Goddess of Forests

I’m shedding everyone’s tears
but I can’t shed my own.
I’ve got it all under control in public;
I’m a mess when I’m alone.
Pain has injected itself into me;
I can feel it bite through each bone.
I’m decaying on the inside,
but this body is not mine to disown.

My heart and soul are drowning,
and I can’t stretch my hands
to reach them through my throat.
They’ve absorbed too much;
they’re heavy,
but I can’t save them.
I can’t drain the tears and blood;
I can’t heal them.

So, I’ll shed my tears through my mouth.
I’ll cry with my hands and feet,
with my words,
and with my songs,
and with my dance,
till I feel my heartbeat.
I’ll shed my tears as sweat;
they can’t pass through my eyes just yet.

Broken

Laughing in pain,
slowly going insane.
Hiding the stain,
praying for rain.
Ignoring the knife,
pleading for a new life.
I’m breathing in death,
desperate for rebirth.

Mrs

MrsI am experimenting a style of prose writing in which a character narrates the whole story to the reader in a personal way, like the reader is a spirit/ghost and the chosen character is the only one that can see them, like a secret best-friend of some sort. I am still working on it, not done yet. Enjoy!

We just spoke, for three hours straight. Tomorrow is ‘the day’, our wedding day, and to say that I am extremely nervous would be to say the least of the emotions that I feel right now. There are probably ten more that I cannot describe with words. See my palms; they are so sweaty.

My friends are having a good time in the room next to this one; I just don’t know if I need to let them know that I am freaking out. I need to use the bathroom so bad too.

Before I leave for the  bathroom, I just want you to know that I am very happy; don’t get me wrong, but just as worried as I am happy, worried that something might go wrong with this contract that I’m about to sign. I’ll tell you about the call I had with my man first, after my bathroom break, and tell you something I’ve never told anyone later.

I’m back. Sit with me on my bed.

About the call, I had never heard him say the words “I love you” so many times in three hours! He kept going on about how happy he was that we were finally getting married, and how lucky he was, and all that. I had never heard him talk so much, so I guess he is nervous too. In-between sentences, he would ask if I was listening, and I would say “yes”. Then he would tell me he loves me and I would reply that I love him even more. There were about ten “I love you”-“I love you even more” pauses before I told him I needed to sleep, and that he needed to sleep too.

There is a problem though. Well, I don’t know if it’s a problem or I’m just being petty. I had never really considered it an issue before now but I can’t get it out of my mind. He hit me a year ago with his belt, I’ll tell you why later, and I’m scared that he might do it again. I had never seen anyone that angry in real life.

He promised it would never repeat itself, I believed him, and since there were no permanent scars on my neck and arms, I didn’t tell anyone. Giving an account and telling someone else my business wasn’t at all necessary.

This is the thing- he has anger issues that I have refused to fully address, and I might be done for. Babe becomes a beast, a raging monster, whenever he’s angry. Oh! I should tell you something else before I forget. I went to an astrologer/psychic out of curiosity. I’m a Leo and he’s a Scorpio, if you would like to know. She said we have several Venus-Chiron-Mars-Pluto connections in our synastry analysis, and because those aspects are hard, we both need to learn to understand each other and we would be fine. He came up as The Emperor reversed/4 of Pentacles,and I came up as the Queen of Pentacles/Strength cards, in the readings.

Maybe I shouldn’t have said “yes”, but I love him. I don’t ever want to get a divorce; the thought of it is so frightening, because I hated it when my parents got a divorce. I don’t know; I don’t know what I’ll do if he ever hits me again.

Dead Love

womanShe always had to ask if he loved her, and he often replied with a “yeah, yeah, love you, sure I do. Why do you keep asking?”

She was looking for the Àjọkẹ́, s’ó n gbọ́ mi? Mo nífẹ̀ẹ́ rẹ. The I am in love with you that was often said with a soft voice and a pleading gaze; it was what she was used to, what she had taken for granted. It was what she really wanted.

She hated herself for hurting a man who used to declare his love for her ever so often, sometimes with tears in his eyes, because he did so. 


There could be two different men in this piece, or just one man [the same man], depending on how you choose to interpret it.

Letting Go, Letting Grow III

I’m only broken away from you
but it feels like I’ve been broken into two.
I’m not finding it easy
to put myself together again.
I’m tired and sad and empty,
but you were the part of me
that did not need to grow.
You were so harmful to the rest of me;
you needed to go.

Wife Material

He called you “wife material”,
so you began to blush.

No matter what she knows,
and what she becomes,
why is it that what a woman weighs on
anyone ‘s wife material scale
is what she’s worth?

So, he made you his material,
true to his word.
He even prostrated to get you-
paid your expensive bride price in full.
You’re intelligent and beautiful;
you’ve been spent in the university too,
but you have a new name and owner,
who can do whatever he wants to you.

“K’aso e soke!”,
[raise your gown!];
“afi ko maa lo e mole bii aso oke”
[he demands for the sex he paid for].
He even beats you like “aso ofi”,
to tailor you to suit his needs.
Your husband’s insecurities have to come first;
who are you to have any dreams?

He wears you out,
then he wears you out to functions
where worthless wife-materials must be worn,
to be entitled to respect and dignity.
He shows you to his friends
and tells them to get one like you.
Then he takes you home and hangs you;
he’ll respect you at the next event.

I’m not telling you to miss being a Mrs;
I’m telling you to not miss your life
to be a man’s reserved slave- a Mrs.
A single person is a person still;
if the society will not accord you respect
till you get a husband,
whether or not he will abuse you
in ways that are socially acceptable,
accord the society’s lack of respect no respect
and take all the time you need.

People wipe your tears for a while,
and then they let them dry on their own.

The Man of My Dreams

church.jpg
Many times a week, after we stopped talking, I would have several dreams of him- terribly stressful dreams that would make me cry. In those dreams, I would anxiously wait for him in the church that I grew up in, that we grew up in- where we first met, or in an unknown, deserted place, but he would ignore me.

He never remembered our initial meeting when we first began to talk, as much as I tried to get him to, but I did, very clearly. He was with his friends, and since they were so tall, they looked intimidating to me. He stretched his right hand out towards me and I put mine in his briefly, before asking my question. The question was about a creative-arts program that was to be held, if I remember correctly. I thanked him, and walked back to my guardian or friend, I cannot remember which.

The dream that made me cry the most was the one in which I was talking to him but he was avoiding eye contact and walking away, leaving me in an unknown place.

I had a very similar dream before we stopped talking, and I narrated everything that I could remember to him. I had not been in contact with him for over a week at that time and I was beginning to worry, and as soon as I remembered the dream, after he texted me, I gave him the details. I did not understand that it was a prediction then, and that a little excuse for walking away was all that he needed. We had a little, insignificant quarrel, and he milked the argument so much that my heart lost its perkiness.

Nine months after, just when I thought that I had moved on, that my soul was healed and I was free, although I had occasionally, very intensely hoped that he would text me, I saw him again. It looked like a children’s program was being held at the church. I sat and waited for him in one of the seats at the back, and I saw him pass me by. He did not notice me.

He looked very sad, and his hair was so full and unkempt. I had never seen that much hair on his head. I watched him sit on one of the chairs at the front of the hall. I wanted to walk over to him to say hello but I could not. In the first few dreams, I did the talking. In all the other ones, neither of us spoke to the other. I only watched him and hoped that he would talk to me, but that was it.

After he sat, I went over to the speaker who had the microphone and whispered something into her ears about the children she was addressing. The few sentences that I made were acknowledged- she nodded. I walked back towards my seat and out of the hall, hoping that the distraction would make him notice me. I made sure not to look at him this time.

Ileke idi

I went into a little room with a sleeping mat on it and I laid down. Immediately I dozed off, someone banged on the door. I jolted out of my sleep and screamed his name. I looked up to see if it was him, but it was not. It was my younger brother. He made fun of me the way he does every time any reference to him- the him- is made in my home.

I woke up, and asides the perspiration and tiredness that I noticed, my muscles were sore. My whole being was sore; I cried like never before.

This is me coming to terms that it is over, that he is not coming back, that I have left that church, that he does not love me as much, or at all. This is me letting go off the broken karmic tie and resigning to fate. This is me dying, accepting that my yin will never be balanced with his yang. This is me at the funeral of our attraction and love that died long ago. This is the ninth month, and when I had the dream at around 8 pm today, I birthed my stillborn.

Winslow Homer - The Gulf Stream

Mistakes are for Retakes

First, you make mistakes,
then you let them make you.
You are not your mistakes;
pay no mind, if you begin to hear “boo”.
“Experience is the best teacher”;
that, in fact, is quite true.
Fall, then raise yourself back up,
there is nothing you can’t do.

I’M MISS TAKE, THE OLDEST TEACHER;
I TEACH HIM, AND I TEACH HER.
YOU BECOME YOUR BEST AS A CREATURE,
AND AS A CREATOR,
WHEN YOU REALIZE THAT YOUR
SCAR IS YOUR MOST-ATTRACTIVE FEATURE.

We’ll Get “Bark” to You

New

We’re very qualified,
but we’re not.

“Acceptable resumes should be printed on white A4s”,
but we are black ones.

Lynette.jpg

Our experiences and skills are printed in white,
just like everyone else’s,
but that’s never enough.

They’ll get back to us,
but why wait for the “barks”?
Their backs are already turned at us;
they don’t hire the “darks”.

New York

Paintings by Lynette Yiadom-Boakye (born 1977, UK)