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Lovers in Gwoza: Two Poems by Titilayo Adeoye



timidly shaking as legs find air from the shackles,
in its unending stir for water

to pummel the cymbals in this winding mouth.
the thirst of this soul, is the thirst for roses on rocky linings

she’s a view from the mountains,
a trembling portrait on a brick cathedral.
quickening in a thousand places i lay soothing words on her table, as i serve a pat as
forming warm words

all i hear is a name
a resurging whisper in this head
khali, khali, please don’t go

stay by me, she beckons
i held it closely to my heart

kissing it with these very lips,
for once, a smile is birthed, as with a baby’s crackle
i love her, as i love this.
we shall build for this a dome.

(Gwoza is a town in Borno State in Nigeria)


i was there
i saw it all
my tears flowed endlessly
it was so peaceful
he turned and asked me
these flowers are beautiful?

i glanced at the vase
all i saw was his gloomy face
the sad innocent looks
saying, ‘stay, here with me!’

in a casket.
he dropped the vase on the casket
walked away solemnly.
Poems © Titilayo Adeoye

Titilayo Adeoye
Titilayo Adeoye
Titilayo Adeoye is a graduate of Obafemi Awolowo University, where she studied Literature in English. She loves writing, proof-reading and editing for individuals and companies as a freelancer. She works at Kraft Books Ltd., Ibadan.


  1. These poems are products of skillfulness with the pen. The poet is obviously adept at poetry as the poems are not just emotional in tonality but also poignant; capable of drawing the effeminate to uncontrollable lachrymose. I love them!

  2. With these nice poems, I say welcome to your future. More geleen to your elbow. The sky is definitely not your limit.We thank God for you.

  3. Every time I come across the writeup of this author, I feel a new galaxy is discovered and it opens such a space for new dimensions of thoughts. The common thing is that you are placed in the position of the object and bear just as much feelings as is required to understand.

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