after Tiana Clark
I fall from the sky of dream. I grab
bedsheets like they are
parachutes. I gasp. I gasp nightmare
into dawn. I thrash about in blue dark,
scramble for my phone. I can’t write
on paper. I write what I remember
on a notebook app — most times, I remember
nothing. For a long time, I close my eyes &
hope for memory. For a long time,
In a next room, my
mother is yelling at God
in her sleep. I close my ears & open
my eyes to light feeding the curtains.
I open my mind to the moment &
the movement of myself.
I wrestle between being broken & being
torn. I turn off airplane mode &
messages pour. Angry
WhatsApp messages. Preaching WhatsApp messages.
E-mails. I skip the
unfortunatelys. I read. I read.
I highlight Tranströmer: I’m awake and don’t know where I am.
I envy that [his] life finally returns, envy
any name that appears like an
angel. I sprawl. I spread
into a pool & ponder. I ponder.
I wonder why some hands can hold hope
when some cannot even hold themselves. I curse
I write sgshjsnsnshdhdbbd.
I cross out sgshjsnsnshdhdbbd.
Bach. The Art of Fugue. I lie
on the bed, I sup the song.
I haven’t spoken yet, can go
a whole month without a mouth.
In the bathroom, I sing.
Hymn until lather fills my mouth. Here, I mourn
the morning before the bird. I know this morning like
I have known all mornings. I, too, like
how they look like hope. But God,
I hoard too much night.
Mayowa Oyewale writes poetry from Ile-Ife, Nigeria, where he currently studies Literature-in-English at Obafemi Awolowo University. A poetry reader at Chestnut Review, he Instagrams @mayowaoyewale__