Family bonds

I don’t know when I stopped

being my father’s daughter

perhaps I was tired of grappling at expectations

of using my blood to paint someone’s incompetent ego

I don’t know when I stopped

being my mother’s friend

perhaps I was tired of accommodating excuses

of staring at an epitome of disappointments

I remember when I stopped

being my brother’s sister

We ran and played till a fuse went off

I worry that spark may never connect

I don’t know when my prudent sister transformed

she says it was during Grandma’s death

Her light went dim as if she were dead too

she could only come out a different person

all I know

For as long as I have lived

Family has been the strangest bond

It runs deep only to evaporate like butane

Young

My mother’s thigh were my stepping stone to the world beyond when I was born.

Day in. Day out. I sat there listening, never understanding the sounds from her mouth.

I clung to her bosom, it was all that I had.

I remember my first movie, Elizabeth Taylor being swooped off her feet.

Maybe I could be a damsel in distress in a marble courtyard  someday, I mused.

It was such a  honor to be chosen as a damsel when I was young.

Some night, mom was my enemy, other nights, dad was my enemy.

Both nights I had someone I could confide in, an ally. My brother.

He stood up for me when  I was defenceless.

The hero I’ve never known until the day he became  mute.

The intimacy I had never appreciated until we became estranged.

Not by time, space, barrier, but by words.

I watched him detach, I watched him change.

Before my eyes I saw him become what I could never describe, what he may never be able to explain.

And that day came when I held his hand, I cried and bursted out in anger

He bowed his head for he didn’t want me to notice the creeping duress that was becoming too real.

His unflexible smirk revealed a cold war unfurling within him, he was no more than ten.

When I was born, I clung to my mother’s bosom, it was all I knew .

I knew my knight in shining armor all too well,  until he went missing, hidden inside a conch.

Now, I have even less than I did then, but I have chosen to be a knight to nobody, but him.

He is small and compact but  will always be my ally.

Then I met a man and when I told him this, he told me, “youth is wasted on the young”.

As we steadily approach the third decade of life, I have to admit that perhaps he was right.

 


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Image Courtesy:  Silas Onoja on Twitter