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Two Poems By Idowu Odeyemi

'In Syria, Bombs Makes Prayers Cacochymical'

Salah and I escaped

The blast that ate our mother

And turned our father

To the offering God punished

Eli's sons for eating

Looking for the safest tattered house to sleep:

I held Salah's hand, smiling

To him

As if what we lose is the leg of the goat our father rears

Before death

Everything in Syria will make you cry, so why not smile?

I know Allah hates oxymoron.

A bullet entered through Salah's forehead,

While we were fleeing from gunshots,

I smiled and took it from the back of his skull

& put it in my pocket

(I cannot carry a dead body with me &

I have to show the world I have a lineage

so that they will not say I fell from the sky)

My smile convinced the BBC journalist

(Just as I know, it is convincing God)

So, he came to me and asked me:

Journalist: before now, what do you want

to become?

Me: I want to be some mothers prayer

every morning they wake up to pray

for their children.

How to Love Like a Piano

I wonder why God did not create humans for

the same purpose Bartolommeo Cristofori built the piano:

to give pleasure without aches.

Like we go to the piano and play

the keys according to the tunes we like

and, later drop it after playing

to our satisfaction

and the keyboard does not complain.

We should be like the piano:

be useful and love people without expecting anything

in return.

About The Poet

IdowuOdeyemi is a Nigerian poet. He is the Deputy Editor-in-chief, Echelon review. He was shortlisted for the 2018 Nigerian Students Poetry Prize. His works have appeared or are forthcoming on Tuck Magazine, Kalahari Review, Core Magazine Africa, Merak magazine, Constellate journal.

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