When My Father Prays

When my father prays,

He kneels to the floors,

Bows his head to the cross,

Clasps his hands together

And presses the knuckles of his hands

To his cracked lips.

 

What is he praying for?

 

Is he praying for his brother who his trapped in his own body?

Is he praying for his sister who was shrunken and painted?

 

Is he praying for the boy

Growing old at the dining room table

Covered with cloth strewn with

Tapestries of the Yoruba Kingdom?

 

The boy, alone with time, who waits for

His sisters, grown

His father, busy

His mother, heaven

His brother,  worry

 

I inch closer to him,

Kneel to the floor

Bow my head to the cross,

Clasp my hands together,

Press the knuckles of my hand

To my cracked lips,

And pray with my father. 

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