- YOU KNOW A MAN WILL TREAT YOU RIGHT BY HOW OFTEN HE APOLOGISES
I want no boxing lover my sister loves to hum
I love you is the run(a)way code for girls on my street before Nicole’s death she always said a declaration precedes a request I do not have the time for questions selfish I am will never say the words will never let you sing them to me ghosts ghosts ghosts all of us ghosts all of us running towards nailing our names on road plates ghosts selfish aren’t we praying for freedom yet refusing to drown with the sun a sin it is to own a pair of eyes yet sit in the dessert no flute in vision in my bathroom I throw punches at the window trying to nail my name into my mouth you see sometimes it’s love sometimes we just want to hear the sounds of doors opening sometimes we wish to sleep to another human fanning our body no crime is it I used to say to everyone who questioned all my multiple open relationships what I never said was how many people have you watched dance with your name on their neck whilst grocery shopping I pick out cartons of tampon for my visiting man surprise first a nut next it’s hope first a snake next a parrot nestling on your head darling our love was never meant to birth a baby glissade cock crows from our nose to leave our breath now a paw thumping our throats on every radio station not certain I can say goodbye right now but I know the only thing bigger than the size of my love for you is your anger
My pillow is decaying, but my sister
calls me a flower. I don’t want to be. Only
strangers to heartache fear death. It’s one
and the same. One and the same. Nothing pretty
about loneliness, nothing pretty about the cold.
My grandfather talks about death so often he calls
it a dream. He is ninety-two. In the beginning, everyone
prays to be a colour. Never black. Turned our skin to pots
just to scrub death away. When asked about love on first
dates, i say love is the dream. You shouldn’t bother when
Or who, how long, it’ll happen.
I’ve heard rumours about
my bad cooking, but nothing
repulsive goes beyond my
collarbones. I am not a good
human. Unsure i am a living
one either. Frankly, there are
more ghosts now than there
are humans. The bad thing
with love is that people are
always smiling. Almost as if
they can’t tell their rear is out
in the cold. When things go
south, i spill secrets i shouldn’t.
I once called the man i almost
started seeing a fuckboy, and
that hurt me more than it ever will
him because i have never been
mad enough to tell a lie.
Christtie Jay writes from Abuja, Nigeria. She’s been published on Glass Poetry, African Writer and others.