i know your pains —
cloaked and costumed in capsules of electronic smiles.
if the make-up of our minds was plastic, you’d have broken into Warsaw pieces.
& if our pains were fire…
well, i understand the day is for us—for the outside world.
and the night is for you. always for you.
no, you and your pillow.
and yes, your wall, too.
and all other things that comprehend the diverse tongues that you chant with an aqueous cheek
in a dark bedroom.
all other things that are long-suffering recipients of your fisticuffs.
Psalms say weeping may endure for a night…
but yours is quite different, because in the morning, the joy is forced.
you crawl out of bed, rummage for the orange t-shirt that reads “zero worries”
and furnish your teeth with a grin till another sunset.
you tote cheerfulness like a household chore.
& laugh the loudest to even the poorest of jokes.
because you know when darkness falls, it is for you.
how strong are you?
papa is a soldier.
he tells me soldiers do not nurse their wounds under the retina of the sun.
i told him about you.
and asked him what your rank should be in the force.
i know your pains.
for you, midnight is a gnawed cork with a broken muselet, and you are a bottle of troubled champagne.
i know your pains
Excruciating, within ironclad bars of silence.
but you’re not alone.
you will never walk alone.
Enobong Ernest Enobong
is a Nigerian writer resident in Lagos. He has particular interest in creative writing and essay writing; and has written several short fictions and poems (including haiku) that cut across subjects including nature, humanity, culture, Africanism, social and national consciousness, nostalgic events, politics, the Divine, and death. He has also authored a number of essays and articles. His works have been previously published on Praxis Magazine, Haikuniverse, Nnoko Stories, The Shallow Tales Review, Nantygreens Magazine, Nymph Journal, Words Rhymes and Rhythm, Writenow Literary Journal, The Zen Space, Nasara Creative, and elsewhere. His haiku is also forthcoming in the Wales Haiku Journal Spring 2021 issue. Currently, Enobong is a Law student at the University of Lagos.