Exit Route

His father left when he was 13.
He blames his mother
for not being able to hold him down;
loosening her grip and knowing too much,
saying too much, and being too much for him to handle.

His father left when he was 13, but
he aged beyond the lines etched
on his forehead; his place unknown in a world of unknowns
without a guide to give him the ropes.

His father left when he was 13, growth spurts life, but he couldn’t ask her what it meant.
His heart thumps and throbs, but she’ll never understand the feelings.
He feels things, thoughts
pound, and he wants to scream at her because he needs him.

His father left when he was 13;
His mother stayed until he was 15;
Her baby died when he was 16, and they wept
because, by God, they’d tried.

© LaYinka Sanni, August 2014.

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