Going to Igboora

The asphalt aisle

is overlooked by tired-looking second-hand generators at opposing ends,

like guerrilla vultures.

At this side of Ìbàdàn

I hear the fatigued conductor call,

‘Igboọra—igboọra—gboọra!’

The first syllable seems to grow old and

decay in sight of the intervening consonant.

I enter the albescent-coloured bus,

engine heat and dusty seats

welcome me with a bearhug.

But I don’t know why I’m the only life here:

old bones, wrinkled smiles and poverty-stricken-scrunched flesh follow me

as passengers

who’d travel this long, very long journey.

Chidiebube onye Okohia is a Nigerian creative and author of the chapbook Of Dark Tides and Darkling Times. This piece is a personal experience of the uncertainty and uneasiness he had while he was about to embark on an approximately four-hour long intrastate journey, during the early weeks of his NYSC year in Nigeria. Some of his works have appeared in Counterclockfresh.inkThe Daily DrunkThe Shallow Tales Review, and elsewhere. He tweets at @o_okohia

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