One Day by Rasaq Malik Gbolahan

by Leslie Anne Mcilroy


One day, one night,
one day and we are
gone and never to
be seen again, my friend.
And our beloveds will
gather to mourn us
and whisper our names
as if we are there to
answer them. One day,
one night, and who
knows if we will die
when bullets hit us
or if we will die when
bombs engulf the sky.
Who knows if we will
have time to say our
last prayer or if we
will still celebrate
our birthdays before
explosions ravage
our country, my beloved.
One day I hope to visit
a mosque without
dreading the man
holding something
in his hand as he
stares at me through
the window. I hope to
walk the streets and tell
my children that we will be
fine, and that it is sure
that we will. But one day,
my friend, but I am not
sure of the day, but if the
day comes and you see
my body burrowed
by bullets, bury me where
my children will never be
able to locate my grave.
My friend, I mean I don't
want this grief to
spread like smoke,
like air, like wind.


Photo of Rasaq Malik Gbolahan

Photo of Rasaq Malik Gbolahan

Rasaq Malik's work has appeared or is forthcoming in various journals, including Rattle, Juked, Connotation Press, Grey Sparrow, Jalada, Saraba, Sentinel, New Black Magazine, Kalahari Review and elsewhere. He is a two-time nominee for Best of the Net and his poem was among the finalists for the 2015 Best of the Net nominations.