“September, 2053” by Nana Nyarko Boateng

NKA Photos Ivory Coast


I can’t and won’t add anything more to what the poet says!

September, 2053

Like cats lick
their dead kittens
we gather by
your lifeless body
and make promises
with our tongues

We cry for ourselves
knowing you will let
your body
smell foul for once
in the insides of our red sand
and we will have nothing to touch
your bones will be of no use
even to dogs

six feet too deep
yet too shallow
for the memories
you bring
every morning
you wake me
and while I select my dress
you point at the crumples
and find dirt in my nails

you yell, at everything,
breakfast will be cold
I walk too slow
my hair needs oiling
do I not see
that my hair needs oiling?

six feet too shallow
to hold our conversations
about how I need Christ
how you need me to have money for me
the smiles you send to meet my dreams
when I tell you about them
and you say ‘okay hurry before you get too old’

then you yell at me some more
for drinking the milk
you left for Max
the cat you loved more than me

you did everything for me
didn’t you?

Now I have to learn to cry
for myself
Because you are not here to
do it, like you did every night
after I told you
that my dreams were not mine.

– by Nana Nyarko Boateng


With permission from the poet.

(The photo above was taken by Nana Kofi Acquah. I love it; it gives me the feels. And though the women are not mother and child, the picture does depict an aspect of the mother/child relationship, doesn’t it? Nana Kofi can be found here)



  1. Homage To Life – Jules Supervielle

    It’s good to have chosen
    A living home
    And housed time
    In a ceaseless heart
    And seen my hands
    Alight on the world,
    As on an apple
    In a little garden,
    To have loved the earth,
    The moon and the sun
    Like old friends
    Who have no equals,
    And to have committed
    The world to memory
    Like a bright horseman
    To his black steed,
    To have given a face
    To these words — woman, children,
    And to have been a shore
    For the wandering continents
    And to have come upon the soul
    With tiny strokes of the oars,
    For it is scared away
    By a brusque approach.
    It is beautiful to have known
    The shade under the leaves,
    And to have felt age
    Creep over the naked body,
    And have accompanied pain
    Of black blood in our veins,
    And gilded its silence
    With the star, Patience,
    And to have all these words
    Moving around in the head,
    To choose the least beautiful of them
    And let them have a ball,
    To have felt life,
    Hurried and ill loved,
    And locked it up
    In this poetry.

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