Crossing the Hinterlands

Prosper Ifeanyi

(Nigeria)


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Memories come to mind like excavated statues. But this in particular is peculiar
to the smallest fibre, grain of sand, drop of water & landscape our feet trodded.

My whole family voyaged through the turmoil after a sickle glistening in the dark,
yanked us from our homes. At sea, some fishermen pulled a bottle from the deep;

it held a parchment of paper which read: there is life beyond these walls. The sky
was paranoid so it rained heavily. My father lost in the rubrics of his scattered village

took an extra charm of his own & gulped a tiny star down his belly. The rocks we
climbed, naked as the rumbling of barrels. Nights in the tropical hinterlands, I heard

little boys tried crossing, but none made it to the other side of the rift. I still see them.
Nebulae of clouds careening like fluffy piglets across the purgatorial sky. Bullet marks

lodged in their bodies are all we have to show for it. If the bridges could talk, it would
say more the hinterland borders and all the deserted towns surrounding them—

mangled, dry, broken and fazed with web-spun mirrors hanging in broken fashion. This
place is no place. When I say the borders are thickening; they thicken with blood.

With a line from a poem by Wislawa Szymborska

Prosper Ifeanyi

is a

Guest Contributor for Panorama.

Prosper C. Ìféányí writes from Nigeria. His works have recently appeared/is forthcoming in South Dakota Review, Panorama, Magma Poetry, Black Warrior Review, New Delta Review, Salt Hill, The Westchester Review, The Offing, Variant Literature, New Note Poetry Anthology, and elsewhere. His debut micro-chapbook, Sermon (Ghost City Press), appears in 2023. He has a B.A in English and Literary Studies from Delta State University.

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