Homage to Abraham’s Bloody Hands

on a certain eid-el-fitr, half of the planet
is an abattoir, a mumeen admits
that he sheds blood—
we have households of murderers,

holy cow, your innocence is not
coming to your rescue, alas,
if there is a god, he lives in the soul
of every animal we slaughter

& I would pray to you before
slitting you to death & god is
immortal, this body is just a house
for an elusive soul— it would desert you,
your breath would follow,

& laid would you be, bleeding
for help, writhing & wrangling
in pains, bloated tongue—

god told abraham we would become
butchers, slaying our first sons
in the blood of goats,

the guilt of man would have faded
since the grief of a father who tended
his son’s throat to a knife, & his flesh
& bones at the horror of machetes,

my penis would have been mother’s
favorite meat, my tongue for the girl
next door, but who would have slain
my father if not his father, & his
father if not his father’s father?
& no lineage left to trace our name to,

because there was an abraham in our
ancestry who broke his only chain
left to transcend his time on a desert,

there is a footprint of god & wisdom
in a father rearing a ram for the
feast of death, this is why we are here
today— the eid is our homage to a
father’s sacrifice— the rite we observe.

About the Author

Tukur writes from a coastal axis in Lagos Island, Western Nigeria. His poems are inspired by existence, memories, creation, lust, love and identity. His poems have been published in Lunaris Review, Libretto Magazine, The Quills, Echelon Review, Art Of Peace Anthology, Z Publishing (Best Emerging Poets 2019) and elsewhere. He won the Brigitte Piorson Monthly Poetry Contest (March 2018) and shortlisted in many others, including the Collins Elesiro Poetry Prize (June 2019).

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