I became an adult at five,
Living on my own without a home.
I am the fruit of their curse,
I am meant to die as I live,
Wipe the tear and count the smile,
I am the unburied walking corpse.
Call me Almajiri or a begger, but I'm a child.
Birthed by the living and not the dead.
I don't care about the thorn in my feet
Nor the scorching sun above my head.
My stomach is too painful that I must listen to its singing bird.
How can I blame those who thought I was mad?
When I smell and eat all that is weird.
Listen! To me who was born to burn,
By a heavy pour and an undying sun.
Listen to me who was forsaken by laws and men,
I am the house of fly and the custodian of pain.
Listen to me, whose childhood crawls away from fun,
To be born unwanted, was that my sin?
I am walking in the darkness of morning.
I am sitting but always falling.
I feel shy seeing my mates running
In beautiful clothes and I know they must be dreaming
Of a future I dare not hope of having.
As my tears run from the germs I'm eating,
I blamed myself for almost thinking like a normal being.
I know when light fades from stars,
I know when sun wakes and shine,
For I see them from our dear roofless gutters.
My body is immune to health and it plays with sickness,
Yet there is no mama to tell or papa to wipe our tears,
Who will listen to my plight, who care about my feelings?
© Yusuf Muyibat Avosuahi