scripture as exit By Hauwa Shaffii Nuhu

scripture as exit

there is a girl somewhere
faraway from her sister who is
unconscious and on a table
in a different city with earth the colour of happiness,
surrounded by doctors cutting her open

the girl is speaking the language of healing
into a glass of water:
a tear, tongue rolls of scripture
doused in arabic.
she unfolds each word like it is god
and as she drinks it,
uses the last drops
to rub the right side of her tummy,
she closes her eyes
and sends its powers to her sister

By Hauwa Shaffii Nuhu


Hauwa Shaffii Nuhu’s work has appeared on Ake Review, Brittle Paper, The Bitter Oleander, After the Pause journal, Eunoia Review, and elsewhere. She’s a 2018 fellow at the Ebedi Writers Residency in Nigeria, and is currently pursuing a law degree.



wherever water becomes a servant to an unseen war. I

say this

for you to know how it is to be an empty basket

under rain. Nothing fills you like

your shadow cleaving a night song into

a devoted darkness.  A city

stitches a man’s cut with a fire of needles.

A man says leave and

I’m seeing my body molded like

moimoi in a new widow’s belly. What is hunger

when the heart is enough eternal meal for grief. What

erupts from

a silenced body if not a damned night

taking the rare shape of tears? A bit, my wound

shifts like a boy’s last breath trying to

wring flames out of his body.          A book opens hopelessly like

dawns with no more men to yawn. Everything is now flickers. And

a page is my body, in summary of a rust car. abandoned. You don’t

move further when you’re a tired feet clutched with

1967 slippers on the road linking your absences. a

kind of tremor rushed like wind, arranged my beard a little,

and a grieving dictionary flips to page 404. A subject to a damned city.

My body, a disengaging content, and I’m believing here

that it isn’t an error.

By Mesioye Johnson


Mesioye Johnson is a bird of many colors who writes to heal his darkness and the world around his waist. His works are featured or forthcoming in African Writer, Eunoia review, Sub-Saharan magazine and somewhere else. He is @mesioyejohnson on Twitter