OJO Taiye

Ojo Taiye is a young Nigerian poet who uses poetry as a handy tool to hide his frustration with society. He also makes use of collage and sample technique. He is the winner of many prestigious awards including the 2021 Hay Writer’s Circle Poetry Competition, 2021 Cathalbui Poetry Competition, Ireland.



All quiet on the fire front 

What is it that makes me see myself
more loving than the capitalist world?
Every time I watch the news my heart
goes out to the lonely orphan bear.

Look: there, as when a cone explodes
during a flare, another dog lay lifeless
on the charred ground, staring at a falling
pylon—the quieting chorus of ruin. Nothing

is blooming today & a man in my mother’s
village is breathing and asking— will the
water be gentle with me as it rises? I’m long
past hopeful and yes, beyond upset, I wish I

could say they’re just animals and my mother
is not sick. Still everything that is burning has
a name. Always something fragile and my father
looks up at me and sighs. We’ve lived in many

shelters. Even after the mud slide, a river slopes
along my heart to forget, for a second, the volume
of destruction. The thing about summer is: it doesn’t
come as joyful as it did once. If we are talking a-

bout a feverish planet, a thick pall of smoke still
hangs over my country’s green lungs. There is a
premonition before a ruin. Every herder I have
ever met said something about drought. More

drought. Or maybe to ruin the moment of camping,
a thousand heat-strokes & oh, there is famine too—