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Your mother pronounced you a taboo after
she saw you climbing another boy's body—

she sank all her teeth on your skin & heavy
slaps descended on you like rain.

You do not know if it's a demon or a curse
but every time you try to refuse a boy's body,

a train of desires crushes you & you rummage
for a boy's body to pour the urge.

In your mind, a girl's body is a lime—too sour like
your mother's; a stick—too hard like your sisters'.

What throws your body on fire is when a boy
creeps inside, lick your desires & make your

hormones charge like currents. Your mother
trundles headway along with you to the home

of the family's pastor. Thinks the taboo that
runs in you stems from a demon. You return

home & your mother sprinkles Holy Water
on you, mutters a prayer in

the process. Because your body is fire, & what
ignites it to glow, is to comb another body with

same propensity of fire you carry. You wish to
tell your mother that she's a drama queen. That

the miles she walks to thaw your body is a needless

Emmanuel Ojeikhodion is an emerging Nigerian Writer, Poet, & Essayist. He's reading a B.A. with honors in English and Literature at the University of Benin, Nigeria. He typically writes about the dark. He's been published in Rigorous, Capsule Stories, New Horizon Creatives, The Rising Phoenix Review, African Writer, Còn-scio, Pangolin Review, and elsewhere, and was a finalist for the Best of Kindness Poetry Contest 2020 (origami poems projects). He listens to Blues, country & pop music. Say hello to him on Twitter @hermynuel.
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5 Jun 2023

Jackson sat at Kay’s bedside, one of her hands laid atop his, palm to palm, fingertips against the soft inside of her wrist. His fingers measured her temperature and pulse, her blood pressure, and her blood oxygen levels. She was no weaker or stronger today than yesterday. He was unsurprised and uneasy. Her vitals were regular with sleep. She had been resting when he returned from the shore.
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