i started painting at nine
a girl who still loves
sky blue and lemon

tea. i'd do my nails
and use water to
know about my

body. only at night
did i begin to want
to leave. i'd raise

my hair and hide
my pencils inside
and try to finish

the apple. the moon. the girl
all of us one time
didn't know where

the door was
i fell like loose
beads. candlewick


she is not leaving        the sofa       for tomorrow
to a box made by       mum suns        only at the garden
one kite to another, orange, green, red, we dance line to
lily around the clock is nobody’s future went outta vase
the shadow stroke       is the time       to finger two wires
the glow inside       your scar       was made to shine

David Ishaya Osu

David Ishaya Osu was born in 1991 in Nigeria. He is a board member of the Babishai Niwe Poetry Foundation based in Uganda. His poetry appears in Chiron Review, CutBank, Vinyl, Transition, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, and The Nottingham Review. David is a fellow of Ebedi International Writers Residency, and is currently the poetry editor at Panorama: The Journal of Intelligent Travel.

Cover image by Sarah Meadows


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