What Have Love Do For Me?

Red Scar Peju Alatise

As I dey look you for eye,
your pity just dey do me for mind,
but the wahala wey you dey look for,
na the wahala wey you go find.

You dey shine eye well well but
e be like say you no dey see.
My body and blood don hot well well;
what have this love thing do for me?

I dey always do plenty things for man;
I dey cook all kind sweet sweet food.
Of all the man wey I don love,
las las, no one even do me good.

The palava wey love give me too much;
I no just get strength for pain again.
Abeg waka away comot from my front;
If I love you now, wetin I go gain?

The Cycle

GetAttachment

She holds the key to your heart,
after you hand it over to her,
and when things don’t work out between you,
she throws the key at you.
You pick the key up,
turn it anticlockwise to lock it,
and for some reason,
tell yourself that she has locked it for good,
as if she has the power to.

When you hold the key
to the heart of a new “she”,
after she hands it over to you,
you delightfully throw the key at her
when things don’t work out between you.
She picks the key up,
turns it anticlockwise to lock it,
and for some reason,
tells herself that you have locked it for good,
as if you have the power to.

Each person nurses their pain
and doctors their true feelings,
dwelling on past pain,
staying away from true healing,
until something or someone
shows up to show them

that the heart does not,
the heart does not need,
the heart does not need a key, anyway.

Thing 1 & Thing 2

Osun (Giseli Magalhães)

Thing 1 was not thirsty,
but I offered him a drink.
He drank till my cup was empty,
and threw me in me to sink.

I struggled back to shore,
you can bet that I was sore,
but Thing 2 grabbed my finger,
and told me his heart was pure.

The river of love is full again,
the river of love is me,
but Thing 2 is still famished,
’cause my cup was smashed at sea.

So tell me, ìyá mi ‘Kojú,
help me make my strength from you. 
How do I tell me that Thing 1
is all but nothing like Thing 2?

Chiron-ke

Yusuf Grillo

I want love,
I ask for love,
but when Mother Earth offers it to me,
I shake my head from side to side.

Think of me as a child;
think of me as a pregnant woman.

I am in pain;
I am pregnant.
I bear and carry my hurt
like an unborn child
in my heart’s womb.

No one can deliver this child;
no one except me.
No one but me
can deliver my self,
can deliver me from my self,
but I don’t know how to,

or is it that I don’t want to?

I can’t.  

I’m a pregnant midwife
who delivers people’s pain-children
but walks around with her own
still-born still in her.

No one can deliver this child;
no one except me.
No one but me
can deliver my self,
deliver me from my self,
but I don’t know how to,

or is it that I don’t want to?

Can I?

Think of me as a child;
think of me as a pregnant woman.
I’d prefer it if you do

not think of me at all. 

Love: Wings and Legs

Collete Miller.png

Painted by Collete Miller

Love gives you wings, 
but when the wings are abruptly taken away, 
your legs are yanked off too.

Love, after it is withdrawn,
leaves you somewhat paralyzed.

So,
first,
you have to grow a new pair of legs-
the process hurts like death. 

Then you develop an irrational fear of wings,
which is funny,
but also sad.

Hello, Ma!

Family

“Hello, ma.”
“We think of you as a foolish girl.”
“Helloo, ma.”
“Plus, we do not like you very well.”
“Hi, ma.”
“Hello, ma!”
But if we pretend, you’ll never tell.
“Hello, ma.”
Listen to the silent ways we yell.
“Helloo, ma.”
“Have a seat in this fake-love cell.”
“Hi, ma.”
“Hello, ma!”
“And welcome, to Hell.”

Bitter-Sweet

How can a yang be a yin?
How?
How can a thing that ought to heal, hurt?
How can a thing that ought to help you walk,
and better still,
give you wings,
keep you in chains,
and make you weak?
How?
How can a thing that ought to give you life
take your breath?
How can a feeling
be the opposite of itself,
when unrequited?
A thing so sweet and tender,
like a newborn baby,
but strong enough
to put you in a chokehold
when you least expect it?

Isn’t love delicate?
Isn’t love dangerous?

Venus in “Deadtrograde”

A plate of pain keeps
the potential heartbreaker away.
Two glasses of my old tears daily
will help me not go astray.
I am strong and I need no one’s attention,
but I want to be desired,
and I want affection,
but I was hurt,
I don’t want a repetition,
but I want love,
and I can feel the tension.

I don’t cry.
I don’t cry anymore because
there’s a pool of my tears
in my heart,
and I like to swim in it,
or go down, down, down,
and drown,
when a potential One
comes too close
to my feelings’ flat.
If anyone is to decide when I drown,
it has to be me, myself and I.
Would you give another potential
pretentious,
manipulative
dingbat
a chance to decide when you die?

Six planets are in retrograde
in my natal chart,
and venus used to be one of them,
but she’s not anymore.
My venus is dead;
a man has stabbed my sickly venus to death.

The Passover

He looked like every other angel of birth,
but he was an angel of death,
He looked like every other angel of berth,
but he was an angel of dearth.
He would make you moan in pleasure
so he could make you groan in pain.
I had been warned by his ex-prey,
and I was prepared to drive him insane.
I sprinkled the blood of his victims
on my door,
and in my eyes,
and in my ears,
and on my lips,
and on his head.
“You can’t kill me like you did them.
You have tried in vain, lame.”
He passed right over me,
and he never called me again.

Unre-QUIT-ed IX

Love is a Cave:
I am in love,
but I am in it alone,
I am not in love with you,
and it hurts me to the soul
each time you remind me
that I am in love,
but you are not in it with me.