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I Find it Hard to Begin a Poem Sometimes


Anything can be a flower if you are not paying attention. 
I should say something about our doormat.
I should be in my essays or interviews discussing this place.
When standing in front of a mirror, my body tells me how reversed I
………… have grown.
I see you through this poem, in every word I write and you read.
Sometimes like a smile crawls through my face, and I say, think what 
………… you may.
I believe the first step in anything is making a step.
Each time I walk myself out of the bed;
there is something else that walks out with me.
Say it’s my voice. The same as my neighbour’s
who tells me, no girl will ever love you.
Though in my dreams, I am not a ruin on every lip.
In my prayers, I ask for a metaphor, the kind not buried in the face.
It’s important that I let everything know that I truly want to be happy. 
But not happy like two strangers in a bed in search of true love.

DSC_0200Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto is from Owerri-Nkworji in Nkwerre, Imo state, Nigeria and grew up between Germany and Nigeria. He has a Chapbook, The Teenager Who Became My Mother, via Sevhage Publishers. He became a runner-up in Etisalat Prize for Literature, Flash fiction, 2014. He won the Castello di Duino Poesia Prize for an unpublished poem, 2018 which took him to Italy. He was the recipient of New Hampshire Institute of Art’s 2018 Writing Award, and also the recipient of New Hampshire Institute of Art’s 2018 scholarship to MFA Program. In 2019, he was the winner of Sevhage/Angus Poetry Prize and second runner-up in 5th Singapore Poetry Contest. He won the First Prize in the Creators of Justice Literary Award, Poetry category, organized by International Human rights Art Festival, New York, USA, 2020. His works have appeared in Lunaris Review, AFREADA, Poet Lore, Rush Magazine, Frontier, Palette, Malahat review, Southword Magazine, Vallum, Mud Season Review, Salamander, Strange Horizons, One, Ake Review, Crannòg magazine, The Question Marker and elsewhere.


This poem was originally published in Vallum issue 16:2 Fear

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