Father was royalty | Poetry

'Kúnlé Adébàjò
2 min readApr 6, 2020
Photo by George Becker from Pexels

They said he passed away
Peacefully, quietly
As he perched on his dearest dusty sofa mounted close to the rusty exit
So quietly
The body still held on to his battery-powered torch
Minutes after his spirit decided it was no longer home

If ever dark clouds had silver linens
This should qualify
For father lived a painful life
Drugs were his snack
Their fragrance was the signature of his room
And their wrappers
Felt at home like cobwebs in a haunted apartment

I don’t mind leaving like father did
But no one envied how he lived
I do not have the details but I’ve heard the words
Diabetes. Hypertension. And their first cousins.

They said their was a thunder strike right before his exit
I imagine God’s voice calling out to Adetola Nelson Adebajo
Each strike delivering to father’s ears the consonants of the trio
Nothing less would have been befitting
For father was royalty

I imagine God would have chipped in a more subtle strike to chant, “Legato!”
As dad’s soul made its way up to its creator
And his lifeless body back in Ago-Iwoye would have let out a final chuckle

I sobbed after mom broke the news
“Your father is no more”
Then she wailed in a way I’ve not heard in years
I sobbed because it felt like the right thing to do
To somehow honour your memory
And because maybe those tears, in evaporating,
Might hurry after you to convey, for the first time,
How much you are loved
But father had no need for the mourning of mortals
He’d always joked about this moment
And taken pleasure in mom’s naive protests

It’s been two years
And I still wish I could
Dial “Abu Luqman” or “Dad Etisalat” and hear someone call me “Fatai”
Only you preferred that name, which perhaps now lies with you in the grave

There are regrets
But none greater than having no memory
Of us sharing a hug
As other dads and sons often do
Or having the honour of dancing
With you, on the day I finally resign from bachelorhood

Rest well, Legato.

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'Kúnlé Adébàjò

An arcless half-a-wise-guy who happens to write. All you need to know is at: www.kunleadebajo.com.