the search for cadavers of father’s ghost

after the twin attacks on 13th June, 2020

a girl tying a hijab
decorated with monochromes of grief
had come to monguno
to understand the cacophonies
that triggered the silence of her father

what she sees are choreographers of winds
whistling dirges in falsetto,
gore gushing from the anatomy of soldiers,
wetting the aridity of lands.
i watched the girl mourn.
her fearful phonations jumping out
with dictions filled with rust,
searching for comfort in the hands of ashes.

after mourning, she began studying
the geography in the stiffness of bones,
unlearning the theorems
behind the contours in life.
i must live on, she said,
scattering requital’s inhibition,
searching for cadavers of her father’s ghost.



the day my brother arrived with neurons
of god’s mercy from mongolia,
mum placed her hands on his body,
investigating the chronicles behind the
scars of wars tattooed on his essence.
it was then we knew of plagues
that manifest on the recesses of the mind,
inflicting truce with legions of rust.
it was then we knew of soldiers
who invaded cities to eat the lust of tyros
wearing mantras of fear.
it was then we knew that tales of gore
being used as currencies by oligarchs
weren’t conspiracies procreated
in the annals of tinder.


Ajise Vincent is an Economist based in Lagos, Nigeria. His works have appeared in Vinyl, HEart Online, Foliate Oak Literary Magazine, Jalada, Chiron Review, Asian Signature, Ann Arbor Review, Yellow Chair Review, Bombay Review, Birmingham Arts Journal, Mocking heart review, The Cadaverine, Saraba, deep water literary journal, Brittle Paper, Tipton Poetry Journal, Sentinel Quarterly, and Elsewhere. He is a recipient of the Eriata Oribhabor poetry prize 2015. He loves coffee, blondes and turtles.