To the children old enough to read


By Servio Gbadamosi

I do not know
what to say to
the children anymore.

They are old enough for
the news and it comes with
the wind ever so often.

I have read a thousand books but
my mind squats in obeisance
to that which kills me.

I have grown to love my grief—
to toy with the serpent knowing
that I’ll one day die of its fangs.

I am of a sad generation—
warriors spitting into the
sacred stream of power.

Is anyone out there feeling the
same or am I the only citizen who
wants to fist-fight the president?



Poet  and publisher, Servio Gbadamosi, is a recipient of the 2016 Ebedi International Writers Residency fellowship where he co-wrote the chapbook, A Half-Formed Thing with fellow residents, Ehi’zogie Iyeoman and Ikechukwu Nwaogu. His poetry collection, A Tributary in Servitude, won the 2015 Association of Nigerian Authors’ Prize for Poetry, and was shortlisted runner-up for the 2018 Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature in Africa.

Gbadamosi’s works have appeared online as well as in journals, newspapers and anthologies such as ANA Review 2017, ANA Review 2018, ANA Review 2019, Crossroads: Anthology of Poems in Honour of Christopher Okigbo, Fela’s Re-arrangement: A Collage of the Poetic Biography of Nigeria’s Folkhero of Afrobeat Music and The Sky is Our Earth: Anthology of Fifty Young Nigerian Poets. He coedited the poetry collections; The Promise this Time was Not a Flood: A Sevhage Anthology of Flood Poems and Salt of the Heart: Anthology of Poems for Nigeria at 50.

He currently heads Noirledge Publishing, an independent publishing house with a focus on mainstreaming a generation of new voices in contemporary Nigerian writing. Instagram and Twitter: @betaservio