That mummy disliked,


Could curse the days I would run from school.

And the meal I would reject after all the time,

The effort,

The sacrifice.

For my mind is a circus

And Tom; my son,

Here is,

Sitting before his mom,

Fist after fist,

He throws at her,

Running away from the meal,

After all the time,

The effort, the sacrifice.


My mind is a circus.


That daddy was a soldier,

A seaman,

And gone oft time,

Months and years,

Visiting only again in briefs of briefs,


Spent days upon days flirting,



And always angry.

That I could have sworn,

That I could have won the bet,

Of a better man I would be.

For my mind is a circus,

This divorce documents,

Sitting before me,

Staring me in the eye,


And retelling of what father also did.


My mind is a circus.


That his name stuck Tsentse,

And how he startled,

Tired from walks;

Long, unaided walks,

For we teased him,

Toyed him around,

Run our tiny legs in his direction,

That he’d trip,

That he’d curse,

That we would laugh that he got on the bus late,


Weak and hoping for a seat.

Yet nobody did.

For my mind is a circus,

A circus walking back to me,

In my mind,

Beside me in my sleep,

Playing it all back to me.

For there waits my bucket;

My bathing water,

But I am weak, tired, fed-up.


My mind is a circus.


*The author is Etsey Atisu a journalist/ writer based in Accra. His debut project: Epistles to my Bubune, is scheduled for release in coming months. He blogs at

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