Author Archives: AvoSilver

About AvoSilver

On the fringe/ finger tips brushing/ a Divine order/ in a chaotic universe

The Guidance Counsellor by Tahirah Abdulazeez


He leaned forward, pointing his index finger downwards. It hovered inches away from the cap of a Bic biro balanced on an eraser, a make-shift see-saw.

‘You are here. Alone’

His finger migrated in the air, over the body of the pen. It came to a stop in the middle.

‘But this, here, is the centre of the universe, where the energy of the world collects’

He let his index finger drift back, to the tip of the blue cap.

‘Adebisi, you are off kilter. Understand?’

She did.

Failing chemistry was tantamount to falling off the face of the Earth.


Orchestra of Letters


Hell is other people. This is true. I’m probably paraphrasing somebody smarter than me when I say this, a philosopher maybe. Someone else said, you carry your hell within you and this is true too. So, either in solitude or a crowd, as long as you are alive, the feeling of being in hell is a distinct possibility.

What truly gets to me, though, is how compact you can become around other people. You may be all sorts of things, witty, free and interesting, but you are nullified, your potential cancelled out, fractionated into a distilled version of who you are around others. Pulled into an orbit, you become useful for only a small set of things, fitting into a list of other people they know, in a hierarchy of value you weren’t even aware you were auditioning for. So you remain stuck in a role that for as long as you exist and come into contact with each other, will continue to play out. Hell is not an inferno; it is a frozen sea. I am locked within myself, connected to no one, frozen from the core of me right up to my eyes, behind them. Dead.

I am sitting at my breakfast table as I write this, and just opposite me, riveted by colouring books and Golden Morn, sit my husband and his son. I say his son, as though I didn’t carry him and birth him. I did. The thing is he was lost to me as soon as I emptied him from my womb. The moment my son landed in his fathers arms, they bonded and shut me out. It has been like that ever since, them over there, across a gulf and then me, with my iced over soul.

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Bus Stops by Tahirah Abdulazeez


He shuffles forward, one foot in front of the other methodically. In front of him a small crowd gathers. They are busy, all of them. Talking, hustling, and being alive in noisy intrusive ways. The sun boils in a stark pitiless sky . It ripens the mid day smells, cooking food mingles with rotting trash nearby and people smells, of fatigue and stress, the biology of struggle and it stains him, clings to him. The world is a hallucinatory haze and the images before him are like spirits, a blur of colours, pink, red and blue;and noise. Read the rest of this entry

Home for Dinner


I was a child, maybe six years old and I was standing in front of a door, listening in. My parents were arguing. She was tearful but defiant; he was cold, mocking condescending. These were not words I had any knowledge of at that age, but I knew that this was an unfair fight, that my mother was losing badly even though she didn’t deserve to be. Inside me a whole dark planet of despair was forming, with other celestial bodies like shame and regret circulating around it. I wanted to run away and scrub my memory clean of what I had already heard but I was rooted to the spot. They were talking about us, about Sadiq and me. He was insinuating terrible things about my mother, and his reasons for marrying her in the first place, and wondering about my paternity. She was weak with shock, the outrage of it, the audacity of his accusations, which he never really made but were like sabre shaped shadows slicing away at her decency. Still I stood there.

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WP 10: Prologue by Tahirah Abdulazeez


This is part of a much longer story being written by Tahirah Abdulazeez. Stay tuned for more from her.



Julius is the man that I want to be with, in the eternal sense, but I know it is not meant to be. In my mind there have been a series of warnings and cautions, whispered then screaming, epic in the ways that the myths from antiquity will have you believe, as though I was a visitor to the temple at Delphi. And the nymphs or sylphs and other fragile spirit creatures are all singing and wailing that I am taking a trial of love, walking on gleaming hot coals with no god to protect me, because this love is not the path they would have chosen. And in giving in to my romantic rebellion I only have Aphrodite to contend with, she the magnanimous but ever so fickle goddess of love. So I am not safe, with every kiss and every stare I am digging myself deeper, twisting myself into a cavernous engulfing but oh so delicious mistake. But I have to do it.

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