30, a collection of poems by Jaachi Anyatonwu banner

accusing fingers,
curious eyes,
hushed voices
come crashing in like raging waves
knocking off the shadows
of self-control.

you shut your eyes
and let the mayhem slow fade
and drown in your yesteryears

in the scent of akara frying by the roadside,
the faint tick-tock, tick-tock
of your neighbour’s grandfather clock.
and the rushing sound of water
down the drain
to Aba river.

in the weepy feeling fingering framed photographs
trying to trace the faces you’d never see again.

in this melancholy moment
you realize the same building you’re boxed in
housed that childhood best friend
whose father you never liked.

in a second,
your focus shifts from one timeline
to another, and suddenly
you remember mothers embrace,
her favourite song and her last words:
“son, not all battles must be fought”

and while the slipping grip
of what was once colourful
slowly turn grey until they fade
like smoke into formless air…

all accusing fingers,
curious eyes
hushed voices
join them in a chorus
of evaporating revenge

your furious soul calms,
as well as the chaos in your head.

this is how memories became your asylum of restraint.

don’t die,
We Shall Find Joy


Jaachi Anyatonwu
Jaachi Anyatonwu is a poet, editor, and publisher living in the suburbs of Aba. He is the author of numerous poetry chapbooks and collections, and the Editor-In-Chief of Poemify Publishers Inc. Jaachi is passionate about discovering new voices and mentoring emerging poets. He is also a fierce advocate for the boy child and sexually molested.

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