Adesiyan Oluwapelumi

By Adesiyan Oluwapelumi

I am sick of being okay.
Term it my ingratitude.

I confess, grace is the sharpest item
I have ever touched.

Go ahead, call me peeled
skin, euphemise my sorrow.

Say to my face, mercy
tutors the sturdiest build.

Laugh at my wretchedness,
call it a cosplay & reprimand me

for a thinking a noose the most
effective way to catch a persisting

breath. Scream into my ears
with bittersweet diction

& overflow the gardenia of
rooted syntax in my ears

with the golden sunrays of your
salutations. Acknowledge my presence

& like the wind, call an unsettling
a startling. Call my cancerous bulbs

glowing goosebumps. Call
fear a contralto of excitement.

Speak as though without legs
and yet in my shoes.

Pacify me with the verses of
a heating mantra and say to me

the fire will cool your burning.
Like frozen fish beneath the watchful

eyes of the sun, say to me safety resides
in the security of your pestilence.

Say to me the sky that burns today
might come back tomorrow and

crackle with a rain of happiness.
Embrace me and whisper in my ears

the fire is more than a validation
of my fusible body. Call it a god

with a lapping tongue thirsty
for a taste of liquid melancholy.

Call my sorrow necessary.
Call it a tribulation I mustn’t fail.


Adesiyan Oluwapelumi, TPC XI, is an African poet from Nigeria. He was the winner of the Cheshire White Ribbon Day Creative Competition (2022). Oluwapelumi writes to explore the intersectionality between memory, language, identity, religion and selfhood. Some of his works have appeared or are forthcoming in Poetry Wales, IHRAF Publishes, Brittle Paper, Kissing Dynamite and elsewhere. He tweets @ademindpoems