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Bursting the tap of tears in their mother’s eyes.
Digging the well of grief in their father’s hearts;
With their sharp appearance and fading off.
Abiku! The born-to-die!
Mercifully wicked, making mothers smile.
Knowing fully-well they’ll leave very soon
to make her cry of her fruitless fruitfulness.
Flooding her iro ati buba* in the spring of tears.
And they’re birthed again to give her a sour smile
And make her cheerfully cry again in tide
Shedding tears for the tears in her heart;
Recalling the pain of motherhood that keeps going in vain.
And they’re marked an ugly tribal marks-
Marking them to know if they’d come back again.
And while they return insistently adamant,
Their spirit is appeased with persuasive incantations.
Begging her flocks-in-spirit to reject her next return;
Mama chant dirges, Baba cast incantation,
Relatives speak pedigree when night falls-
Firm-holding the rootless Abiku to not disappear again
With the sardonic wind of their wicked nature.
Naming them sort of Plea-bargaining names;
Durojaiye, Durosinmi, malomo, kokumo,
Ikudaisi, ikuforiji, okuti, inter alias.
But, at their insistent frustration, are named Kujenmi!
Turning the great physicians to spineless quack,
Making the erudite doctors idle mediocre.
Abiku! The born-to-die.



Ayeyemi Taofeek Kehinde, popularly called ‘Aswagaawy’ is a Nigerian writer (essays and poetry) and has got his works published on Omojuwa, Best Poetry Encyclopedia, Peregrine Reads et al. Find him on Instagram @Aswagaawy

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