—after Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto:
“A House so Cramped God Could Barely Squeeze In”

the sound of clattering metals
                      talks the room into a war ground

you hurry into the living room
the smoke of yelling clouds the air like dust from horse’s hooves

father after backhanding mother
is a fish drowning in the shower

                             you watch mother question God in aloneness
like bubbles blown into the air only to watch them disappear

you kneel beside her to see how deep you can sink too
or imagine your body a lifeboat saving her from the storm

father sits on the couch
                    his mouth a city filled with cigarette smoke

silence lits the room into a procession of shadows
you demand inclusion

the question in your mouth:
a wild animal lost in distant archipelago

mother wraps her hand round your neck
                          like a can of coke. you knit your eyes
                          into hers as if two butterflies trapped
                          in a garden besieged by fire. the moment
                          is orphaned by silence loud enough
                          to remind mother how her body is a sea
                          cramped with so many fishes

Jonathan Endurance is a poetic loner whose work has appeared in or forthcoming in Rattle Magazine, Eunoia Review, The Rising Phoenix Review, Indolent Books, The Ellis Review, Ghost City Review, Canvas Literary Journal, Brittle Paper, and others. He was a joint winner of the maiden edition of Calabar Festival Poetry Competition(2016). His unpublished poem won UNESCO Sponsored Prize for the 14th edition of Castello di Duino Poetry Competition, ITALY. Say hello on Twitter @joepoet_