after Praise Osawaru
every night, my phone transforms into a hospital
front desk, hosting unsolicited calls and
verses bleeding affection and its iteration.
a labelled acquaintance texts me
how was your day?
have you had dinner dear”
for reasons only he knows.
i become an air-traffic controller, converting kilobytes
of binary numbers to stickers, voice-notes and emojis
that do not appease me.
i wish to not be called
“dear or baby” by a boy whose contact
carries the (+234) country code.
my best friend suggests i use the block button,
but i cannot jail a boy for his expressiveness.
so i respond with
please don’t call me dear and i am not you baby”
in hopes to get one less ping.
Semilore Kilaso is a writer who loves to collect photographs of humans, architecture, wildlife, and landscape. When she is not playing Scrabble or reading books, she is reading lines from architectural drawings. Her work appears in Cultural weekly, Entropy, Litvalley, and elsewhere. You can reach her on Twitter @ooreola.