2 POEMS By Timi Sanni

Of Saints and Sinners

Last week at the market,

a man stole bread & they

buried him within a mortar

of curses & they pounded him

with fists & clubs & pestles,

till he folded into petals

of crimson gloom, choking

on a stale breath, till he morphed

into an unbecoming singing

nocturnes to nightmares

in a house of darkness. This man

was a battered drum & the mob

was a band of furious drummers.

This body must know death, I say

wear him the belt of an old tire

& bathe him in a rain of fuel.

But let only one person, sinless

like a newborn dove, carry

the embers of this war,

let him throw fire upon the ruin

of another, chanting ‘Holy, Holy’

as the cleansing fire of God’s wrath

purges the soul of the sinner

because his, is as white

as charcoal.

A Boy Sings the Song of Genesis

a boy held broken words

in his mouth like wildberries,

his mouth beating a beadless

shekere into the nectar burst

of silence. he lingered

behind the horizons of a world

where ka-bi-ye-si was god

hiding a flower in his mouth.

I say god when really I mean

the boy’s father, flower

when really I mean storm.

god swallowed the boy into

a flower and his tongue took

a sabbatical at the sound of

thunder.

now,

the boy hears the growl

stuck in god’s throats

before he hears the music

of silence bearing memories

of loss like the aftertaste

of a bitter fruit. at genesis,

the boy was mute, even now

his voice is a broken bead

so a bird tries to string it

together with a chirp, chirp

the bird loves the boy

& vice versa

but the boy is on a search

for the origin of music

& genesis is a memory

of silence.

Biography

Timi Sanni’s works have appeared or are forthcoming in Radical Art Review, Writers Space Africa, Praxis Magazine and elsewhere. He was selected for the SprinNG Writers’ Fellowship in 2018 and recently won the SprinNG Annual Poetry Contest. He is also an editor at Kalopsia lit and Upwrite magazine. Twitter: @timisanni