Interview by Professor Patricia Wesley, Penn State UniversityArtists & Reviews 


My wife whispered: somebody,
go call Muna to come here.
Let her tell her dad what
she told me today. I asked:
What’s going on
behind those walls
in her room? Muna,
our daughter’s quiet
spoke louder than
her usual. Yes, a
silence likened
to a suicide note.
The obvious depression
you noticed, with suicide
written all over it, like a
flower that folds under
a burning heat, that
writes its own death
on the walls of its
garden somewhere
around the street.
The hashtags were
all on Facebook,
Twitter and in the
Times. It says
a veil on the
frontal fragments
of a china were
chiseled, even as
we hope for
beyond all this
preaching from the
pulpit, to protect
the vulnerable.
Only that each day
wears a mask and
bears the scars
in the echo chambers
of its halls, walls, and dark
alleys. Where a monster
did the unthinkable!
If Cosby is unmasked
under the thunderclaps
of drudgery, in a fine
suit and a white smile
that stole our
hearts, how
many more were out
there? She’s a victim
hiding in her room
under the clouds
and weight of her
own guilt. Her panties
ripped off by someone
she trusted. Who didn’t
care, because no one
was looking? Did he
see the fear
in her eyes
and the shrieks
in her voice that
said no! He went
on anyway and
broke her will
broke her spirit.
broke her virtue.
Take back the
light! Though the
bulb shines, and
bright pours on
my dining table,
the recesses of
my mind are
dark like the empty void
of a black hole. His bed
was the electric chair
on which she was
executed. She gave
up and let him kill
her, because his
greed was too
strong than his compassion,
his arms too strong to resist
and her story won’t count, so she
kept quiet, burning inside like a
furnace, while the world went on.


Ralph Cherbo Geeplay: “I was born in Pleebo, Southeastern Liberia, West Africa. I published my first set of poems in 2009 in the Liberian Sea Breeze Journal, edited by Stephanie Horton. A Pan African poet, I write about Africa, the Liberian civil war, my Grebo heritage, and everything in between. I recently published my poetry in the Blue Lake Review, and the Adelaide Literary Magazine for which I was THE FINALIST OF THE ADELAIDE LITERARY AWARD FOR POETRY 2018. The above poem is copyright to Rigorous Lit magazine 2018

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