This blood clot summer will make a meal out of the children.
Cross an ocean, the earth has its own way of swallowing.
Cross an ocean but never the gulf in your own living room.
Here, even our breath
Dhuule plucks the string, the cassette licking the air around it.
It is everything I imagine an unanswered prayer
to sound like. Yaa rab.
‘Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen’
A boy sticks his tongue out at the world,
lifts an upturned palm, brown like the zabeeb in mama’s rice.
The raisin in the sun in the pot in his eyes.
I’ll be the black devil under your bed, if you want.
I’ll be the statistic you want.
‘Na your money go do am for you! Oya!’ a 70s crackle flares under our skin.
Biggie said get money. We believed him instead.
Now our children are more confused than we are.
Doctor or engineer. Give them a choice, a body or building.
Put our faith in the material.
Isn’t it still standing?
‘Why did one straw break the camel’s back? Here’s the secret:
the million other straws underneath it – it’s all mathematics’
A falsetto locks us in the one-step, two-step called survival,
the youngest will flip it into Dipset dreams and a vodka-misted sigh.
I bear witness to the gospel of boogie-down, trap flip
and a heartache disguised in 140 beats per minute.