When Baba’s stories bore you, you would tap me and secretly lead me into the nearby forest still ablaze with the fire moon to show me the fireflies who return in bright wings, the nectar of night stolen by the reckoning of twilight.
I would watch them brighten your scarified face and ignite your desires suddenly like a matchstick struck in utter darkness.
On one night we had escaped as we seldom do, you had stepped close to me; too close that I could hear both our breaths and asked, pointing to the stars “Aren’t they sparkly?”
I had nodded in expectation adulterated with trepidation and you simply replied “just like your eyes!”
The rest of that night was a blur, I could remember I set home, my lips inflamed with desires I could not decipher.
The gyrations that took place in my stomach were priceless moments but the guilt left me with flatulence when mom stared hard at me. I was sure my spirit had jumped out of my body. It was as though the kiss was tattooed on my lips and Mama could smell it out.
You would walk me to your mama’s kiosk and steal me some biscuits and groundnuts and assure me you would pay later when I complained you were pilfering. But your Mama said you never paid her a dime.
Those were the golden season of our lives.
Adulthood came upon us like a cheetah.
Scholarship arrived for you and you left with a solemn promise to be back – your words not mine.
City pleasures changed you. I didn’t delight you anymore. I was just the village champion with the outlandish tag “my first love.”
Tah! I say, I do not believe in second love or any succeeding kind of love. For me, time froze along with every other thing which sits out of place.
Your mama does not talk to me anymore. She never replies my greetings. She tells me to leave her son alone and continue with my life that there are other boys in the village.
Did she forget? I saw them before I chose you? But this stupid heart does not choose who to love, it just falls in love randomly.
I received a bolt in the heart yesterday. Kate who left for the city years ago came back. She told me you were now a married man with a kid.
I am but a withering sunflower unashamedly committed to our juvenile vows; that you’ll be the sun that never strays from the flower.