Mother said, “never let your skirts go above your knees,”
“Your thighs attract men’s hands,”
“Don’t let your shirts show your shoulders
or the path between your breasts,
they cast spells on the eyes that see them,”
“Beauty is best shown hidden,” she said.
But, on the day eyes feasted on my breasts
hidden by my black turtleneck sweater
and hands crept into my long skirt
and I didn’t come home the way I left.
Mother said, “you walked alone at night,
that was why the instructions didn’t work.”
is a Nigerian poet, storyteller and photographer. She has published some of her works in the Praxis Magazine, The Quills, Mamba Journal amongst others. You can reach her on Facebook @Deborah Ajilore and on Twitter @Afrofille01.