Writing about you – to victims of insurgency

 

I write in comfort, about you
By the window, on my pillow
But I claim to understand
The plight of your orphans and widows
Penning on papers
While you are whining in tatters

How could I understand?
When my family is intact like our enlarged family photo
When I roam in my room, in the vicinity of my home
I dine and I dance
And sometimes I think about you

Yet I claim to understand
With dry eyes that never cried for you
Or cried like you do until your tears run dry
With a full stomach that never rumbles
Or witness the pangs of hunger

While I sleep tight, you sleep affright
I sweet dream, you sweat and scream
And you wake up wishing you were left to your nightmares
Because your reality is even worse

While I wake up to mom and say “hi” to dad
Wave them bye, move on to school
See you later
And actually see them later

My father is late to pick me, I whine
You say also my father is late
But it is not the same
How could I understand?

But still I write like I know you
Like I understand what you have been through
As if I can do you justice with just ink
As if I can fit in your shoe
I wonder what size you wear
Whether you wear, wore or even have a shoe

 
 

Salihu Mahe is a Nigerian writer. He is an engineer by profession but he writes poems, short stories (fiction and non-fiction), and does spoken word performances. His write-ups are driven by emotions, motivation and his surroundings. His writing usually centers on life, love and nature. He also writes to be a voice for the voiceless and is a freelance writer. He is currently working on publishing his debut poetry book.

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