Happy birthday Mums, I wish you more years.
But I am scared of when you die.
I know it is part of life
The sun danced into the room through colourful louvres,
While you smiled at me and held my trembling hand.
Fear showed me my face against the ground, not feet
Yet you pulled my hand to rise off the bed,
Towards the novelty of hope.
And you succeeded right there
To start a new colony of dreams:
Going new places with the newfound strength
Seemed the only reason the muscles moved in tandem.
My leg lunged forward, and you slowly matched that step
And I watched keenly to learn how this would feel later.
Then you took another step, and I nearly took you down
With my weight and St Peter's weight on my shoulders,
My leg lunged forward, and you again matched that step.
The hum of the air conditioner bounced off the white walls,
And the news sad as usual on TV couldn't outdo your smile
To me as you watched me overcome doubt along the way.
Who needs to be ready in such circumstances? Just go.
So my leg lunged forward, and you slowly matched that step,
Smiling, clinging onto my hand trembling no more.
I wasn't going to let you go.
I would succeed.
I had done this before:
Back in Bamenda on baby Bata shoes,
You led the way, I followed.
This time I led the way, you followed.
We didn't fall.
We didn't miss your hospital bed.
We didn't cry.
We lunged our legs forward on an adventure to bring you back,
I led the way, you followed
To give your sinews renewed vigour, renewed life.