The Forfeit of Language

Fatihah Quadri Eniola

By Fatihah Quadri Eniola

There is no swathe that holds the slender back
of hope, no truss to prehend its clavicles from break-

opening. I bend the knee, seconds crash what ladders
me to God. My grandma’s radio returning her

favourite music to the memory bin emptied in my head.
I run, full of days & dusk, the children find me,

viewing the walls & eyeing mirrors
like when we first discovered beauty.

Every day I write them, they cry of the forfeit
of language. my love is the sea

because water has no room
to duvet a heart prior-bared to its own winter.

When my head is a bell tower excruciating,
my sentiment punctuates me

wounds that resemble the world. I’ve walked through
the sequence of seasons, unwrapped body

that sweats from dejection’s spring, the first
time I walked, you cradled around my lonely waist,

your hand, sedating me of the loss of a father.
Some nights, I recompose poems that fail to bind me

the running legs of time or ferry my head
from the turbulence of a bullet. I, too, like a toddler

wave have succumbed to the doldrums of life. I sit at the tip
of another toothless comfort, not fitting

the unbalanced scale of my tranquility,
I nod & write in blank spaces.

Born on a Friday in December, Fatihah Quadri Eniola is a young Nigerian poet and cinematographer. Her work of poetry has appeared in literary journals like Brittle Paper, Ice floe, The Shallow Tales Review, The Kalahari and elsewhere. She is a nyctophobic and lives with a very cute cat, Honiy.