The poet, Chinedu Gospel, describes the uncultured African man as that man whose only adventure is “…traveling around the circumference of waistlines.” The metaphor is the spine of this exquisite poem and we are delighted to share it with you.

– Editorial poem

Tailoring an uncultured African man into a perfect husband

She’d run her lips like a needle
piercing, thrusting in & out of me
like a fabric, seaming me into
a perfect figure.
I mean, I was an unstitched textile with
rioting dyes strewed across my body,
uncombed from everything that
resembles my black skin. I must
say, I miss the smell of pubs,
the smoldering of liquor,
residuals of cigars as it lowers my
pitch on Linkin Park’s heavy – I keep
dragging around what’s
bringing down, if
I just let go I’ll be set free.
I died many times of asphyxiation, yet
I didn’t let go of smoke,
of traveling around the circumference
of waistlines. I don’t tolerate those
screams, but I do. I always did. Mama.
Auntie. Teacher Jennie. The bank clerk.
Now my wife. She’s always over me,
ironing what was rumpled
early on. She ruffles me into
shreds & let me unshaped
sometimes, as if to say, I cannot be
stitched to her taste. Call me rags,
for I dust off the mess, I make
on her face.

Contributor’s Bio

Chinedu Gospel is a Nigerian poet and scriptwriter. You can reach him on Facebook @ de unique gospel. When he’s not writing, he’s listening to music or playing chess.

Read more original poetry here