A Brief Understanding Of Shelving & like most days when the sun colours my skin purple. My mind becomes a tourist in our family house, perusing every nooks and crannies. I sight a yellowed tray of steel with flowery designs, mother calls it tray of hope, says she inherited it from her mother, says it's mine to own after her disappearing. You see, I learned this transgenerational theory of shelving—the possessions of things; broken, lost, and unnamed—from my family tree. Let's say I walk into the ghost of my past and I only perceive an admixture of sweet and sour remembrances, does it mean my body is an incubator of plight? Say I look into a mirror and crack a smile, and caught a glimpse of the demons that punctuates my sleep. Calls me beautiful when I feed his appetite. Horror slips through the fenestrations of my skin and compete for oxygen in my blood wonder how I wander into unknown places? I bath in this liquor of uncertainty. & make a river with my breath. My heart is desert. The river licks my throat clean, & I lose sense of smell. I close my eyes and everything is –a bloody battleground, here the wind taste like vinegar. Every now and then I soak up in the sun ray, allow it perform this art of exorcism. Perhaps, salvation is nigh. The redemption of a yoked pride. Mother once told me I harbor the sun and the rain, in other words, I am joy and pain, & a plethora of their vicissitudes. So, I begin my unbottling; snatch my soul from sliding into a shadow, whisper a lullaby to hypnotize my demons to slumber. & I only dream of paper planes. Let's say I groom a fire within my bosom, its smoke chokes these thoughts of regret. would I taste freedom? my distaste a dissolving? Here, I stray into a bush of wild roses, their petals scrape my flesh–this is a sacrifice for peace, & a baptism in dew.
About the Writer
Joshua Effiong is writer and artist from the Örö people of Nigeria, studying Science Laboratory Technology at University of Calabar. His works has appeared/forthcoming in Shallow Tales Review, Rough Cut Press, Madrigal Press, Titled House, Augment Review, Selcouth Station Press, Rising Phoenix Review, etc. Author of a poetry chapbook Autopsy of Things Left Unnamed(2020). Find him on Instagram @josh.effiong and twitter @JoshEffiong