I do not hope that this finds you well. I know this will find you in a state of frenzy—maybe as you take another life, like you did my father’s. How fast a praying mouth transforms into a dish of maggot or a delicacy for vultures. How eloquent a dying tongue narrates tales of yesteryear. How hard father’s teeth bit mouthfuls of despondency.
Since three fortnights after you took father along with you, I built a brewery on his grave so that every time I take a step further into the darkness, I draw myself back with a bottle of Hennessey. The boy you ignored while you plunged your scythe into his father’s throat retraced his steps back to oblivion, then muttered silent words on his palms before rubbing them on his father’s carcass. Those silent words were his father’s admonitions, & when you come for me, allow me a gulp or two, from your chalice of scourge.
Hopefully, this doesn’t resonate with you but regardless of when you decide to come for me, no thanks for taking my father so coldly. I hope that I am dead before you get to me.
Now, I guess I should stop hoping. How does a fatherless boy tell the story of hope to a coward that lurks only by the darkness?
Olaitan Humble is a writer, editor at The Lumiere Review and reader at Bandit Fiction. A Pushcart Prize nominee, his work appears/forthcoming in Chiron Review, HOBART, Opia, Luna Luna Magazine, & Doubleback Review, among others. He is currently an undergraduate at the University of Lagos. Instagram/Twitter: @olaitanhumble.