How To Say Your Prayer

by Philip Chijioke Abonyi

begin by opening the door of your heart. sweep all the sins away 

say, Father, I am not worthy to call your name, 
to talk more of you walking into my body to live. a dwelling of owls/ dark images/ 
and everything thing that does not please you

forgive me, Father, even though I deserve 
to be snared into the eternal fire
into the jaw of the wild beasts 
to enjoy the seeds of my labors 

                 I have tasted darkness enough and see that it is vanity/ I want to be fed with your light forever/ I want to follow you to adore even the soil you walk on/ I want to be the light leading the world into your temple/ I want to love you even if I will be hated by all/ or buried into the soil of humiliation alive/ 

today, I grow my tongues into praises
you are a drop of water that grows into oceans 
you are the tree growing in the rock
you are the origin of beauty
you are the moonlight depriving night 
from existing in our hearts
you are the genesis and revelation

heal me, God, from the anguish of the enemy 
save me from the arrows shot from grieving hearts
let me not be tempted to devour my 
innocence by burning in fire 
of lust lit by a woman 
make me an iron 
to be strong to serve 
and worship you 
I pray through Christ 
our Lord, Amen. 

Philip Chijioke Abonyi was born at Nsukka in the Igbo region of the east state of Nigeria. He was educated at Government College (CSS) Ada Obollo Etiti and Anambra State Polytechnic. He has lived an active life uplifting modern African Literature. His poetry is noted for its artistry, descriptive power and the way in which he draws on his locality for imagery and ideas. He was shortlisted for Eriata Oribhabor Poetry Prize 2018. His work has appeared in African writer’s magazines like AceWorld, Eve Magazine, Qwenu, Allpoetry, Tushstories, spriNG, Praxis Magazine, Eboquill, Nantygreens, and elsewhere.

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