The journey to thirty-two teeth begins with a tender tooth.
The journey began with sucking the milk on mama's bosom,
Then, walking on feeble feet to call pa-pa.
I didn't know if I called pa-pa because I knew not his face
Save for his monochrome in the family album.
Papa’s exit rested the weight of four on mama
Who strove hard to carve a fine future for us.
The journey was a straight route with serpentine curves;
Kindergarten Close–Nursery Avenue–Primary Street–
Secondary Road–Tertiary Bus-Stop…
Reminiscing on the beginning brings to mind momentous memories;
Of days we hurled removed teeth with seven stones on brown roofs,
Of days we formed a big circle to play who's in the garden…
Of days we dreamt dreams bigger than our bodies,
Of days everything made sense in nothing,
And days nothing made sense in everything.
Becoming (re)molds the dreams bigger than our bodies as children,
Becoming is a long queue of dreams & debts at our doorsteps,
Of days we sleep with worms humming in our stomachs,
Of days the light at the tunnel’s end seems like a mirage,
Of days everything makes sense in nothing,
And days nothing makes sense in everything.
The thirty-two teeth munch on briskets of responsibilities.
Edited by Ashley Cheak (@axhleymorgan)
AKINRINADE FUNMINIYI ISAAC is a Nigerian realtor and writer with works appearing in Writers Space Africa Magazine, Olney Magazine, Praxis Magazine, Word Rhymes and Rhythm (WRR) and elsewhere. He's the initiator of two poetry collections: Si(gh)lent Night (2017) and 60 Seconds Silence (2020). He can be reached @esv_keks on Twitter and Instagram.