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“Quiet” + “reaching for light” by Jide Badmus

“Quiet” + “reaching for light” by Jide Badmus

Church bells have grown beards
of dust. The markets are denuded.
Pigeons have taken over the parks.

We stopped calling the days by name.
Today is abiku—yesterday replayed—
tomorrow will wear this same face.

This quiet is of a wound festering,
a dream decaying. This silence is
of a love withering, craving the bliss
of tending—a touch of sunlight or rain

reaching for light

my first time at the
Sunway Pyramids, 

i walked down 
an ascending escalator 

in my head. i know
one man who would go

through with such impulse
—a tipsy Max once sang

a love song to 
a stranger in the elevator.

when i’m bored, i sit
in the mall & watch 

people ride the escalator—smile
at memories of little brother 

sneaking up on automatic doors 
at the Sheraton. in this darkness, 

we constantly reach out for 
a ray—spark of laughter, 

blue skies in pockets 
of clouds. 

they say there is light 
at the end of the tunnel—

but we have on our hands
a growing tunnel or a 

light receding like my hairline.
hope is a woman, 

bald—this wig on her
head will not grow a strand.

Jide Badmus is inspired by beauty and destruction; he believes that things in ruins were once beautiful. He explores sensuality and healing. Jide’s works have appeared or are forthcoming in The Shore, Disquiet Arts, African Writer, Dream Noir Arts, elsewhere. He writes from Lagos, Nigeria. His social media: twitter @bardmus, IG @instajhide

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