His absent father: By Otatade Iseghohi Okojie




His absent father


He sat at the window glaring through musty glass, 
As the car pulled up, 
Twiddling his thumbs and crossing knees, 
The heat of the day soaking old clothes to skin, 
His sisters hummed in the living room, 
His world was silent, 
Mum's Egyptian vase fell on her settee, 
Time was a liar, 
It was Sunday again, 
Young men with age on their shoulders 
Left the front door half open, 
Pebo was skipping with the girls from sixth avenue, 
He was dumb; 
But smart not to wait for time, 
People have died at this window 
He thought, 
But it was still a beautiful day two days later, 
And only 48 hours gone, 
Young men in business suits shoved keys in old doorways, 
Esla the drunk had died 
Leaving his children nothing, 
Yet the memory of his old bob Marley songs 
echoed down the street, 
Maybe he should stand up and get water, 
His cup was half empty, 
But everytime he moved, 
Night turned to day, 
Day folded to night, 
And his sisters had weaves now. 
The house filled with the chorus of noisy children, 
The sobs of an elderly woman raped 
Of her beauty, 
And Pebo did not skip anymore. 
On change street, 
Something happened when people were ready, 
Everything begins when some disappear, 
So he disappeared, 
On the train to some place he didn't understand, 
He had scars from ghosts he couldn't see, 
And eyes as tired as a dying old lady, 
There were mustache hairs 
above where he bit his lip. 
Inside his driveway an old mustang 
Replaced a forgotten bike, 
Home was now, 
A woman who made good love, 
And cooked good food, 
But could not understand a functional broken man, 
The words were there, 
The sentence never formed, 
We bumped on the streets one day, 
And I said; 
"Where's your father?" 
I swear he twiddled his thumbs, 
All the way home.

Written by Otatade Iseghohi Okojie




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