When Ma tells you she needs grandchildren because she’s inching closer to her grave, you know it is time to learn how to love a man.
Look at him from the eyes of your first lover, the one you were addicted to. Whose attention you weaned for.
When she introduces you to Abeaze, your heart does not quiver neither does your belly flutter with sweetness for Abeaze but, you know you can learn to love him.
Think of your first lover’s taut arms, how you felt safe wrapped in them. In a world where other arms tore slaps into women, where strong arms murdered 19 year olds you wonder how his could be so tender . You wonder what Abeaze’s touch will feel like.
When Abeaze says he does not see a light in your eyes each time you’re with him; when he says your love feels forced, do not reply. Even when you can smell the scent of another woman on his shirt, even when you know better, you don’t know how to untangle yourself from this web of truth. So smile, press up against him and tell him it’s all in his head.
Avoid thinking of our first lover, think of ways to end his stay in your heart, your body. You yearn him, his voice, his presence. The way the world stood still those times you were alone with him sharing dreams, laughter and icecream. But you love Ma and Ma loves Abeaze , claims that he is just like your dad who she buried almost two decades ago. So for ma, you learn to love Abeaze; to peel your desire out of yourself.
You know Abeaze doesn’t love your core. He only learns to love the gasps of desire from your lips , the ripples of pleasure from your skin and the moist warmth of your sex. This is what love is for men. This how they choose to love- to love a body. And this is not good enough for you.
You meet your first lover on a rainy day at the mall after many weeks of not returning his calls and ghosting him. He does not show any anger. He is as calm and tender as he’s always been, the way you love him. His eyes are seeking and you answer.
‘Ma says I need to get married’
‘It is about time’
‘You know there has never been a place for us in your mother’s heart.’
The truth hits home.
‘Just do as Ma says’
‘But what do you want? You ask’
‘But there’s Abeaze now’
‘What do yu feel for Abeaze’
‘I don’t know, my stomach does not flutter for him the way it does for you. ‘
‘But theres desire.’
‘So you only feel butterflies for me?’
‘So feel all the desire for him and feel all the butterflies for me.’
Saw a poem and decided to scribble this down for you guys. Sorry for my absence on this platform, but this is a reminder I’m still here, still breathing.