Velvet

Everyone dies a good man;
tributes taught me that.

my grandfather’s dentition looks
like a bad floor tiling
but I love it.

my new routine
Is playing hide and seek
In the spaces between his 92 yr. old teeth.
I cling to the roof of his mouth
when he flosses,
hoping to find his recipe for long-life.

at what age does life start cropping your growth?
telling you that henceforth
progress is backwards;

a fast-forward in reverse
watching you slowly shrink back into helplessness
just like day one

I watch my Grandpa shave vigorously,
as if to prune his mistakes
as if to retrieve his youth
but how much of a repair
can be done when
a man’s skin turns to velvet?

my grandfather now lives a velvet life
He has become a collage of stories.
these days his mere breath is a blasphemy to death

and when he walks
his body is a glass of trembling water.
this is what age must look like;
ceramic
attempting to break but yet steady.

I want to help the earth carry
the weight of my grandfather’s feet.
But I fear the depth of his
memories would sink me.

By Ofem Ubi – Instagram @ofem.ubi

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