Four Poems by Ojo Taiye

IceFloe Press

Autumn Leaves

it’s early & i’ve found out that i can’t keep joy to myself. how else to start a new year? (i want to say how else to begin in a strange land). i am the hero of this poem. the one who leans into the night & chants how heavy the world weighs on my slouching shoulders.

smoking the last navy cut— when i think of my mother— a black thread twisted around my neck. how is it that i didn’t spend my whole life being happy? my grief eviscerates my body, breaking it into two: like rain, my stomach is full with the excesses of leaving & staying.

does it matter what we call a thing— the safety of shadows & how the ocean is a safe place to begin. home is a ripe avocado on my tongue: sometimes darkness offers you light.

i can’t afford to…

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