Someday I’ll love Kwaku Kyereh

by
on December 10, 2020
Someday I'll love Kwaku Kyereh

after Claire Schwartz  / after Ocean Vuong
 
Kwaku, you have loved—& you have been loved,
where the skin did not break is where it blackens.
 
Give thanks, Kwaku—give thanks, to the trees
& the wind that gives them rhythm—to the
 
birds that learn to make a home where the trees are
cut. To your morning glory & your dreams.
 
The sun envies the oil that pours on your head every
morning, Kwaku. Someday it'll descend. It'll bow.
 
The lonely hours are your freedom, feed a squab
& it'll sing when you need a song. Break an egg, break
 
a spell. You have killed your song. When you meet God,
tell him you know why He sent them out of the garden.
 
Kwaku, don't say He needed it all for himself—don't tell Him.
Let Him wonder, He's God—He made a man he knew
 
wouldn't listen. He made a world He knew
He'd have to destroy, let Him wonder—tell Him
 
he's not God if He needs an answer from you.
Kwaku, you have loved—
 
you have been undone,
you're here—
 

[This is a confession, a lie  & a fact]
 
There's a child born in my hometown
who may never get to see the sea,
when I walk at the beach, I'm full of gratitude
& admiration.
 
My grandma says, do not part the legs of a woman
If she says 'no' or if she's bleeding.
Both are abominations among my father's people—
there's no lie here.
 
On YouTube, there's a video with only one like,
of a sea filled with plastic & all the things
that unmake the sea. I weep, I do not like the
video too—I kneel & write my prayer with tears:
 
Lord, do not let my kids see what we have done to the world.
 

Henneh Kyereh Kwaku is a poet from Gonasua in the Bono Region of Ghana. He’s the author of Revolution of the Scavengers, selected by Kwame Dawes and Chris Abani for the APBF New Generation African Poets Chapbook Series. He can be found on Twitter @kwaku_kyereh.