by Kanyinsola Olorunnisola

She learnt about love
from the markings on her mother’s body
and wails of agony that escaped weary lips
on nights when her father returned with staggering legs
and fermented breath.


She learnt about love
around tense family dinner tables
where the clanging of fork and plate
filled the void of riotous silence.
She learnt about love
when her mother bundled up curses and regrets
in fancy boxes and left her heart
to the music of another man’s hands.


Love for her
is a romance of warring hearts and broken souls
in havens of dispirited devotion,
finding comfort in the arms of strangers.
Ask of her today,
you will see her walking the streets
with divorced thighs, virgin fingers
and a ballooned belly.



Kanyinsola Olorunnisola is a poet, essayist and writer of fiction. He writes from Ibadan, Nigeria. His writings border on the themes of unease, racism, colonialism, terror and all things familiar to the black folk. He describes his art as that specialized literary alchemy which aims to extract beauty from the frail commonplaceness of words.


His experimental works have appeared or are forthcoming on such platforms as Brittle Paper, Kalahari Review, Bombay Review, Lunaris Review, African Writer,, Authorpedia, Kreative Diadem, Parousia Magazine and Sampad International Journal. He was the 2016 recipient of the Albert Jungers Poetry



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