Dare Tunmise

Dare Tunmise
is a Poet and Essayist. His works have been published both online and in prints and have appeared or are forthcoming in the Sublunary Review, Madness Muse Press, Nigerian Tribune, Akewi Arts House, African Writer, the Kalahari Review and elsewhere. He currently lives and write in Ibadan and he could be found on twitter @dare_tunmise

Dear Departed

“We have nowhere to go, but we are leaving anyhow”
                                                                        —Tyree Daye

And answer this,
if departure would be the end of us
Where do we go writing maps in the footprints
Of friends who left home before midday?

I’m looking through the photographs of old friends
and picking silence where absence sit like rocks in the vacancy of names

It is only in these pictures we have remained a galaxy
sharing warmth and mischief before the
desert came calling our names with the promises of

Before you signed your names to a war calling you    because war is
the only song found worthy in the tongue of home

There are days I wake up thinking about the sea and its endless lists
of drowned voyages,
and my mouth singing memories would not
stop a boat      and the old promises of us to keep the flotsams awake
with Psalms.

Tonight, the news from Tobruk speak of migrants found
dead floating the face of the sea but nobody gives a name

Another headline speak of ambushed soldiers
Found dead in a jihadist war our country’s silence would
Not stop from asking for blood and more blood

Tonight, in the possibilities of roads, I journeyed towards
Time, but stars of exiles do not seek of reunions in a moonless sky

I do not know if fishes get to narrate their own exiles, I do
not ask,

But the ocean I built with friends that left is empty of
ships and I do not seek for a canoe to take me home

Dear departed,
I do not want the waves to bring you home
Into a funeral led by birds,
I long for a night filled with wine and mischief, while we drink of the grief
and joy embedded in those Moments unshared in our undiscovered exiles.

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