LitPub

Cloudburst in Jakande

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stormy eid. rain washes the dua off our tongues. old central mosque brimming with bodies the brown of archipelago barks. i witness a crippled boy bum-walk a blind man to the front row of the saf’. & my guilt puckers beneath my skin. cracks in the rusted zinc-roof which used to pour sunlight into the […]

Ní Ayé Mìíràn

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Ní ayé mìíràn mo fẹ́ jẹ́ bàbá láì fojú sunkún àwọn ọmọ mi, láì ní ìrírí ètùtù wíwo àwọn ọmọ mi padà sílé bíi ara tí wọ́n kákò bíi ẹní-ìkírun, láì lo awọn alẹ́ mi pẹ̀lú wọn láti máa sọ ìtàn ìlú tí onílé ti ń di àjòjì tí wọ́n ń wá ibùgbé. Mo fẹ́ […]

Bridge Across the Sea

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 (When words paddle  their way from  English to Korean) A new 240-page book containing the Korean translation of  a selection of  my  poems found its way into my hands a couple of  weeks ago – after waiting for six months in the parcels vault of the Nigerian post office. Long-coming but enthusiastically embraced.  An ample, […]

Bilateral Love Affair

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I love my country. But America Courts me — the man with everything. I love my country: Dark, Black, Gold Yellow teeth & a hunger for me: My country with its abundant rains That loves us to death. I love my country. But America Is big everywhere: Texas. McDonald’s. Starbucks. America Sephora, Walmart, IKEA, The […]

Lumumba’s Gold Tooth

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And in the casket came a tooth, Burden of four pallbearers There is a heavy weight to this tooth Extracted in cruel colonial jest from the jaw Of an assassinated patriot, like priceless coltan From Katanga’s bleeding bowels Belgium’s burden Congo’s catastrophe Sixty years, memento of the King’s colonial guard Now glittering trophy in the […]

The Happiest People on Earth

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We are H-A-P-P-Y We are H-A-P-P-Y We know we are We are sure we are We are H-A-P-P-Y Happppppy! I I come from the country Of the Happiest People on earth, Where death sells at ten for one kobo And the Living envy the peace Of the hastily dispatched. Living every day on the edge […]

Born to Die

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They will ask me when I know, I’ll sigh and say not so long ago. It happened in fragments—piece by piece you came and filled up the empty space—and in a matter of time, you became my world. They will be surprised when I say you are the only man I have ever truly loved. […]

Mama Calls Me Tennis Ball Because I Always Bounce Back

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I still remember my ball boy training you have to squat with your left leg simultaneously kneel with your right leg perpendicular to your left so even if you miss the catch the ball is halted by your legs at a 90-degree angle I often missed the catch even before my strokes never the athlete […]

Aníkúlápò – A Short Story

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Ìyá Àgbà Every ẹsẹ of Odù, every word of ìwúre, every atom of àfọ̀ṣẹ that would make this day had been wept for, sweated over and bled on by Ìyá Àgbà. Patience had never been her thing, she wanted all her things done now! However, each time she found herself growing impatient, and remembered the […]

Where Is Our Government?

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“We have a lot of insecurity in Nigeria. By road we are not safe. By train we are not safe”. (From a survivor of the Abuja-Kaduna Train bomb; Mon., March 28, 2022) Too many ills do a nation kill Ills just as many as the corpses That clutter every gutter Of our callously mis-governed country […]