Violence

I am not your mother, oh country

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but I’ll wash you clean. Bring me the bath water and soap, I’ll have to wash you off my skin          off my tongue                  off my marrows, till you transform into a scum-flow I’ll trap in a bath bowl, un-forgetting to spill the water and the baby into a memory […]

What Exactly Do You Want to Know in Tolu Agbelusi’s ‘Locating Strongwoman’

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In Tolu Agbelusi’s first poetry collection, Locating Strongwoman, there’s a poem titled “Museum of Women,” that acknowledges and celebrates the various ways women have affected the growth of the speaker and her ongoing construction of womanhood and selfhood. The poem uses the museum as an austere aide-mémoire of women’s lived experiences, the shifting between dispossession, […]

To Miscarry A Country

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i ask that you return the dead, god, i ask that you turn the bullets toward the hands that shot into the crowd            in Fagba, a bullet tears open the stomach of a pregnant woman   i’d like to ask the drafting angel what it intends to do with the stillborn            […]

A Crisis Like no Other

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It was after class period and we were in the Chapel for afternoon prayers when the Rector of my school, St Joseph’s Minor Seminary (or SJS as we called it) Zaria, stormed in like he had lost his way; his face furrowed with fear. It was ominous seeing such a gigantic figure running in that […]

Forgive me this Grace — A Suite of Poems

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Forgive me this Grace “in Italy a lot of migrants beg for moneyfor food, on the street” — Lucky I remember your face, veteranof the Mediterranean, of sea crossings,veteran of boats. I listen in stillness. I do not say to you, my guilt is America.I listen to you talk of shurroty, the act of beggingfor […]