Alvin Kathembe

'full price'

I want to wake up each morning
choosing you
and feeling like you're
choosing me.

In a free-market world
full of different models
with different features and add-ons and customizable content
and a new one out every month:
I am
second- or third-hand
'pre-loved', as salespeople say
when they're describing a particularly battered piece of merchandise
and they were rough and careless hands.

I am
missing a few parts;
cracked in some places
(some reassembly may be required);
held together by
bits of poems
and an unlikely, possibly unfounded optimism.

To top it all off, I am
and the price is non-negotiable, please,
be it Black Friday or Cyber Monday or Christmas Eve.

I want to wake up every morning
choosing you
and feeling like you're choosing me:
each of us paying
full price.


Alvin Kathembe is a writer from Nairobi, Kenya. His poetry has been featured in Dust Poetry Magazine, The Short Story Foundation Journal, Poetry Potion and other publications. His short stories have been published in Omenana, Brittlepaper and Digital Bedbugs, available on Kindle. Find him on Twitter @SofaPhilosopher