Burning Altars by Saheed Sunday

The Burning Altar by Oluwatobi Ogunyemi Abiodun

I wonder if there are better ways to say
that our throats hold abnormalities better
than prayers we offer to not get sliced by
God. Today, my chest becomes a home for
everything without color, as if to say, it’s
always okay to nest your minds into pretense
of normalcy till you understand that not all land
grows magnolia—and your mouth is one.
in the autumn wind, tall marsh grass billows
into a pocket of wind & gradually sickness
comes over me like how a garden resurfaces
to rewrite us into the bank we have left our
memories at: to drown, to choke on water
but yet, we robe ourselves with moisture &
gum our father’s faces to the mirror, as if to
say, our hearts no longer hold our father & a
broken trunk here is stretching its tendrils
across our falling skins, across our cracked
lips where little white birds pick a grain of
manna for lunch. Does a broken clay patch
its own splintered body? It’s easier to explain
the physics behind pain without writing New-
ton or Einstein into a code of periodic poems:
like how the transcription of pain is /pein/
see? It still carries its last letter around—
an abbreviation for needles, to sting, & sting
till everything left of you is your name squeezed
into the belly of your sweet pockets & sinking
land. Listen, there are things you don’t need to
pay to get—like a toothache that creates a tomb
in your teeth or how poverty becomes a landmark
that distances you from God. Wear your cloak
around now, and pretend your head isn’t a knight
going to war. Nobody promises you peace of
mind in this land that holds burning altars.



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  1. This story is apt and beautiful.

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  2. You're awesome and talented!!! In rooting for you Sunday!!!πŸ’•πŸ¦‹πŸŒ»

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  3. This is beautiful, Saheed. Please never stop writing.

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  4. A beautiful poem, you see. A great rhythm, too. I'm rooting for you.

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  5. A beautiful piece, the more I read the lines the deeper I love the poem.

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  6. Wow this is absolutely beautiful Sunday, an inspiration am looking up to. Please keep the penning down

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  7. Olanrewaju.

    Wow! It's really astonishing, great work Saheed, keep up the good work. πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

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  8. Salami Alimot Temitope30 March 2022 at 13:31

    This is so beautiful ��

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