Poetry of Rain

by Ridwan Badamasi

The sun has licked the eaves
of March to August while we turn
deaf, listening for rain. September
fast forwards into harmattan
and the first few freezing Fajrs.
The old men of the town,
veterans of the hard soil,
wear the frown of apprehension
when they regard the flat, ruthless
expanse. They talk about a sea
of lush grass dancing in the manner of waves
rolling towards shore, and a reed-lined
river looping and bending through the grass,
teeming with gangly-limbed birds slicing
the water with pink beaks.
When I scoop the earth the thin sand runs
through my fingers and scatters
into the wind like the broken will
of a sick man. Here we do not rise
to dew, only sun-bleached ribcages.
I step into my shadow, raise my face
to the heavens and tongue a prayer
for the sweet poetry of rain
as alien to this landscape as blossoms.

Ridwan Badamasi writes from the ancient city of Kano in northern Nigeria. He is a Biochemistry undergrad in Bayero University. His works have appeared in Praxis Magazine, Konya Shamsrumi, Salamander Ink Mag., and elsewhere. You can find him on Instagram: @ridhwanbadamasi