“Stillborn” by Inalegwu Alifa

Transported on an ambulance
with my stethoscope fixed
to my eardrum,
reading the non-rhythmic flow of the heart
of the pregnant woman lying down,
walking not but laid on a stretcher
through some minutes in
the Intensive Care Unit
before the theatre
like a pack of diazepam,
antibiotics, hand-gloves and syringes
on a moving trolley to the apothecary’s
port of encounter with the ebola-infested
and feverishly dehydrating child.

My hands shiver, my legs muscle-pulling
at the sight of the breathless,
lifeless bodies of the young,
of the old and
of the foetal baby eight months old
on my hands
before cutting off the umbilical cord
from the placenta of the dead woman.


Inalegwu Omapada Alifa’s works have found home in some places: Yellow Chair Review, Lunaris review, Parousia Magazine, Expound Magazine of Arts and Aesthetics, MockingHeart Review, Visceral Brooklyn and GFT Series.