Poetry by Nnadi Samuel

Nnadi Samuel is a graduate of English & literature from the University of Benin. His works have been previously published in Port Magazine, The Gordon Square Review, Artifact magazine, Inverse Journal, Canyon Voices, The Collidescope, Jams & Sand magazine, Journal Nine & elsewhere. He is a co-reader at U-Right Magazine.

For Boys lacking little things as Sleep

My mother asked how we would feed that day.

her lips poised into curse words that claws, 

stings & makes my old man rich in hardship.

this was how she knew motherhood– with an eye for mercy.

mercy, recent search for mercy-killing:

for one thousand ways to die in a dark room,

for how i lost my voice to scribbling,

for what i do when i’m not playing with poison,

& how i carry my silence around without being friends with ghosts,

& how i delay my meals to find no one else at the dinning.

familiar faces seeing through me,

the wars & depression polished on the forehead of a boy backing the world in prayers

made silent, like streets with churches wearing nose masks 

& pastors making sign language look like a recent pandemic.

even God knows how to keep silent when he is not turning water to wine.

my father tells me to be open.

each time he enters the room,

i lose my worth in between a poem.

my sister closes her eyes

thinking she needs a jovial brother, 

not this one who only has flair for ear piece,

& limericks with punchlines to keep him busy all night.

Now that you're here

The Blue Nib believes in the power of the written word, the well-structured sentence and the crafted poetic phrase. Since 2016 we have published, supported and promoted the work of both established and emerging voices in poetry, fiction, essay and journalism. Times are difficult for publishers, and The Blue Nib is no exception. It survives on subscription income only. If you also believe in the power of the written word, then please consider supporting The Blue Nib and our contributors by subscribing to either our print or digital issue.

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Editor of Translation Po-Int, Clara Burghelea selects poetry in translation and exceptional poetry from established and emerging international voices : Submit to Clara.

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ISSUE 42

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