The African Way

WARNING: This literary work contains sensitive words that some may find triggering. It is not meant for everybody.


Pearl drop on a plantain petal

mama rains down a storm

baby’s temperature is too high

red pustules and crusts marking her skin

something we’ve never seen before

Take her to holy grounds!

only fools trust in western medicine

we will cast and bind and spray and fast

till she is released from demonic schakles

a Doctor will do no good

They say the west is nearly bezirk

men flaunt in colourful robes

women flaunt like men

children flex like adults

anorexia is in vogue

O’ dear African Daughter

our daughters should eat when hungry

eat when satisfied

eat when exhausted from food

eat more and look good

Our daughter must be robust

exercise endangers the organs

Fitness repels the suitors

Your dress should drape on curves

A skinny bride is only half beautiful

And what is a woman without a husband?

She went to school and got a degree

we’re proud of her but where’s her man?

She read too much and forgot to cook

Her place is in kitchen playing suburban wifey

God forbid you live your life

god forbid you ever speak up

if you’re not under a curse

you will be cursed

watch the sun fade with blind eyes

Our children never live long enough

to bury their parents

I wonder whose sins they hawk around

whose shadows chases them underground

whose horrendous voices echos cohesively in their mind

Children carry on the sins of ancestors

It is only an open secret

children musn’t speak in the midst of elders

look in the mirror carefully and point your wrongs

be mindful of the silhouette of profanity

No one wants to be the first

fear tallies us together

hatred segments us into aliens

we stand alone facing a highfalutin coven

admiring the crumbling foundation of many ignoramus generations

Black enough

You ought to have to have seen her

Black body paint dripped from mane down to ankles

styled with a latex jacket and thigh high boots

A cigarette pressed lightly between her lips

You ought to have seen her

Her skin coalesces with the golden shy sun

She metamorphosed into a shade of deadly night

Belladonna like the devil’s berries

Honey coloured eye reflecting jewels

shea butter dripping from endless tamed lush kinks

Authentic she is, a goddess to behold

Belladonna like death cherries

Her footprints spirals in desert sand

Causing confusion wherever she trod

Posing for the cover of blacknvogue

Nubian temptress to the very end

And to think she had to scream her lungs

to break through a forcefield of deafening silence

they said she ought to behave whiter

Seemingly she was black enough

she was stunting on cloud bursting lilac skies

One could build a dam from her tear droplets

she lined a path from where she’d been

was forbidden to tango with ethereal solace

She was a drifting butterfly

perching on a fallen crimson leave

bejewelled by virgo’s decadent virtue

paradise cradled between her bosom.

You’ll remember her by her acerbic glances

the confidence that’s apparent through her melanin glow

they said she was black enough

to which she replied, “I didn’t chose it, I got lucky”

I too have something to say

Breaking news, beautiful people, I’m back!. If you’re wondering what I mean by that, I honestly have no inkling. But today, I too have something to say regarding cultural silence and violence towards women.

The other day, My dad posted something about why women’s modesty is equal to virtuousness on our whatsapp group. My sister challenged the post with some strong feministic views. Now if there’s anything I’m good at, it’s ignoring conflicts. I’m not proud of it. Albeit, this banter did trigger something almost like a primal defence system in me, Much unlike any conflict. This may have a positive association with an issue I’m still dealing with.

If you’ve followed this blog for a while, then you may remember that I was raped at about age 7 by an uncle. I don’t like to bring it up, and it’s not a ploy for sympathy. I thought that was in the past, but apparently it resurfaces when a women virtues is questioned.

Permit me to derail yet again. Y’all know Nigeria right? the country that I’m rumoured to be from. We tend to be late, however the first feminism movement completely flew past us. Todays, several Nigerian women are what I call “Quasi-feminist”.

I simply do not value gender roles. I don’t care about whose submissive or who makes the most money. So, why did this simple harmless post about women’s choices of outfit churn my tummy into chucks? Then it hit me, this had nothing to do with the post, and everything to do with my father. I can’t come to terms that my father much like many Nigerian men still believe that rape is either partly or wholesomely the victim’s fault. Much like he may have not come to terms with his step-brother’s action. This is a conversation we need to have but I can never see it happening. Maybe in my next life, maybe.

The #MeToo movement bellowed the voices of women that were living in silence. Rape has been an epidemic in Nigeria for years but it has never been brought up as a societal concern because women are silenced against their violators and programmed to believe that it is a consequence of her promiscuity while the offending gender are left on the bench .

Many victims will venture through life never reaching their finest, most distinguished potential, because conflict especially with the opposite gender sets them back to the moment they got assaulted and they are crippled with a need to be submissive in order to survive.

As a writer, I feel like something has been stolen from me every time I want to connect with my childhood experiences and find blocks rather than creative flows. This doesn’t mean I’m bad, I’m acknowledging that there are seams of my memory that I don’t have access to and that really sucks.

My final point is harsh but there’s no polite way around it. I’ve probably penned it in poetry. They say children grow up to be their parents, and that is my biggest fear. I intend to triumph all the many different ways I am messed up, really because my children deserve to not grow up around the same personalities I did.

Thanks for stopping by for one of my self-therapy sessions, but I have to disappear again. I hope you endure my sadistic poetry for another week till I get back to creating real content.

Auf weiderschauen!

Confessions of a New Born

 

I’m not a prophet, but every now and then I have a prescient, a message that weighs heavy on my heart.

But first I have a confession.

I grew up in  a christian household.  My father being a minister meant for us church once or more times in a week.  This was fine at first, I enjoyed being in the children’s choir, but with time I grew less infatuated with the routine.

I hated not having the choice of going. To worsen things, I was involuntarily a part of the Youth’s fellowship, Hence, I started to rebel .

One day in high school while our economics teacher was singing a tune,  I hummed along, completely unaware. It was a song from a popular christian group. By the time I realised how inappropriate I was acting, he was already searing through his thick rims at me. I  apologised, wondering how mad he must be. Instead, His grim face brightened up and he says, ” One day you’ll be able to sing out loud and not feel ashamed,”.

 

During my last year of High school, a preacher was praying for the graduating students. He later calls me aside and says; “promise me that you will not forget God in the future,”.   I had no idea what he was talking about as I made no plans to leave the tropical shores of my country at the time.

Leaving Nigeria was an exciting period for me. On one hand, I’d never been so far from home. Secondly, it meant freedom, not just from my parents but ultimately from God. I tried to maintain church going for about four months, then I folded up my Bible and forgot about that life. I was 16 at the time.

 

It was fun not living under any rule of conduct, but eventually loneliness surrounded me.

 

Med school was more bloodcurdling  than I anticipated. As a result, I spent 2 extra years, which I never publicly complained about, considering the number of students that drop out each year. Because of this, I always  prayed during the exams period.

In  2017, I reconnected with an old high school friend. We reminisced on old times, on when we’d present the news every Friday. We also got paired up a few times for Bible hour, I’d say the  prayers, and he’d preach.

I told him, I don’t do that anymore, and he seemed genuinely sad to hear it. That Christmas he sent me an ebook titled, “the prayerful woman”. I was swamped with final exams and thesis work, but I made out time to read the book, and it made me reflect on my life choices.

2018. I rededicated my life to Christ, and relinquished the control I thought I had. I’m akin to a new born in the kingdom. Now I  learn everything again. I would say that first, there was, and still is, a purge of Pride, selfishness and jealousy. I’ve also been getting lessons on God’s love and wisdom.

But today, I have something different in my heart, and it says;

“I will turn your weakness into strength, I will turn your enemies into allies”.

I’m sharing this Good news because of the slight chance that you, or even a nation (Nigeria’s election, America’s midterm is coming up) may need it too.

I’d also recommend you read Psalm 139, if your heart leads you to.

So there it is people. I am not a preacher, neither do I want to be! I am but a new born in a  24 year old woman’s costume searching for a her purpose through Jesus christ.

Happy Halloween. God bless you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

but sometimes I have prophetic dreams

The Root of Nigeria’s problems

“MENTAL SLAVERY IS R.E.A.L”

In today’s episode of “Wetin this one dey yarn?”, I wanna stress on a topic that really hits home.

You may have heard about Nigeria in your local media. A lot of foreigners associate us with Boko haram, religious wars, poor infrastructures and welfare etc, and a lot of foreigners are not wrong.

Permit me to do a throwback and shed a little light on the history of Nigeria.

In 2015, Nigerians voted an incompetent  authoritarian named Muhammed Buhari, into the presidential office. As a result of that, we’ve suffered great losses as a nation.

But wait!  wasn’t it obvious that he was the wrongest candidate to elect? You may ask.

YES!

Six decades ago, after Nigeria became Independent from the British colony, we were subjected to military rule. Whenever a Military leader was not effective, a Coup d’état would ensue, as a result of that, the nation was always on her toes.

In 1983, Muhammed Buhari organized a successful Coup d’état and became the head of Nigeria, albeit,  his reign was one of the dingiest in Nigerian history. He was relieved of power in a bloodless Coup.

The man had no business getting the power in 2015, yet because Nigerians have a ph.D in outstripping their prior misfortunes, oodles of people supported his campaign.

How foolish are the people who don’t learn from experience.

It’s obvious that I hate our current government, nevertheless I prefer to look at the root of problems and deduce a solution rather than allowing my anger overshadow my sense of reasoning.

 

“WHEN WILL THE VICIOUS CYCLE END?”

 

 

From the moment a Nigerian child is born, they are taught to follow the rules. Don’t ask questions, respect the elders as questioning authority is the seed of rebellion that is not tolerated.  This is directly enforced by our primary care takers like our parents, school teachers, and religious leaders.

We grow up being fearful,  far from respectful as though we are still serving slave masters, colonial leaders, Militants. The average Nigerian child does not know the meaning of liberal.

Democracy is just a word. Even when you are right, you’re wrong!

Some Africans suffer from Mental captivity, the older generation especially.

This eventually shapes the youth’s mind so that when he travels to foreign land, he cannot socialise with  others, and he thinks of himself as a lesser human.

Ever wondered why Nigerian youths become successful after they have spent years in another man’s country?  after they have realised that they should not be repressed for thinking the right way?

Nigerians are some of the most innovative, creative minds in today’s world, but that potential is only discovered in foreign institutions. This is why instead of hearing about technological advancements made in Nigerian, we hear about innovations led by a Nigerian inventors working for, for example, a Canadian company

That’s right, there are no jobs for majority of youths in Nigeria, and that’s the main reason we emigrate.

Buhari recently said that Nigerian youths are the laziest people in the world.

Lol.

Sooner or later, these old greasy scumbags fighting for power will be gone, and where will the youths be? contributing to  the sublimation of another’s country’s economy.

Good job Federal Govt. Good job Buhari. Well done!

I’m sorry for my tone, if you picked up on that, I’ve just really wanted to say this for 4 years. If you made it to the end of my rant, Thank you for coming to my TEDx talk.

 

Image from Twitter

 

 

 

A Painful Soul

“Scars

from battles hurt

as It should”

 

 

Way back when waking up every morning was a struggle (honestly not too long ago), I used to write into  my Journals aka my ugly notebook. I sometimes browse through them when I feel stuck.

My first journal is actually really depressing, I can’t believe the state of mind I was in back then, but there are some OK memories in there too.

This week I decided to reedit one of my poetry from it to prove to my readers who battle mental illness, and to myself that life can indeed get better. It is a journey, I still struggle and flop. However,  I am no longer that person, yet it is my story of which I’m proud 😀

Happy Friday!


 

Eyes

like alabaster

reaching into the darkness

of my soul,

I gasp.

 

Aroused

Inside me

A faux without doubt

Another life I’ve lived

stringing cords of distrust,

 

Or paranoia

the  definition of toxic

screaming out someone else’s pain

sliding through impressionable doom

unwillingly

 

The taste

like kolanut lingers

on my tongue

masking the chamomiley one

the ones before left

 

Scars

from battles hurt

as It should

yet I must separate the truth

from fallacy

 

Staggering

dysmorphia is crippling

oodles of bubbles ripple

through a heavy

fragile heart

 

let the  legs sink farther

quaking in unison as they bite dust

again and again

my soul will find your

darker soul.

 

Help.

friend, help!

For in solitude, I live

In solitude

I will dine.


 

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Know Thy Worse Self

We’ve all heard it. We’ve watered it. And it’s grown, and it’s growing faster than innovation. It is the voice of destruction. The one who wants to kill you. The one who will stifle you, and choke you to death without justice.

I’ve listened to it whine, all my life. It’s told me how senseless I am. That I’m too dumb to ever be taken seriously. I am too weird to ever have a meaningful connection. I am too abnormal, no body could care less if I spoke or not. It said, I might as well blend in with the bland wall and disappear. Worse still, no one would notice if I’m gone.

For a long time I committed to it, it’s presence was seethingly stark in my earlier works.

Most days, I tried to reason with it, I accepted it, then I pleaded with it. Then, I  just disappeared like it told me to.

For a very very very long time, loneliness was in the air I breath, it was all I wrote about.

 

It wasn’t up to me, it wasn’t in my power. I began to realise how innovative I could be, then how fierce I am.

It’s okay if no one understands what my poetry is about. It’s gibberish, but even gibberish has added meaning to the heart. It’s fine that I’m not a jaunty influencer that everyone can connect with.

I’m weird, I know and nothing can take that away.

Nothing, not even you, the darkest side of my psyche can conquer me. I fight everyday to know my worse self, for only then can I truly destroy the bitch.

Once I had my wings broken, now I’m clawing my way out of darkness.

Letting myself know that I’m stronger for being weak.


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Image: pinterest

Blackaholic

There is an old Afrikaan proverb which says, no matter what a leopard does, he could never rid himself of his spots.

 

This is the story of a German lad. He resided in England for the first four years of his life, then his family had to move back to Germany. He made no friends in his new school, he’d sit by himself during lunchtime. His name is Patrick.

The was only one other kid who ate lunch. She was a tall, black girl. He’d stare at her till she catches his eyes on her.  She had a unique beauty, one he’d never seen before. Her name is Ada.

 

He worked every day at his father’s grape yard, after school hours. One day, he invited her to tag along.  She nodded. Silently, they picked grapes, then a song flustering out the radio which made him forget where he was or what he was doing.  He grooved to the tune. She noticed his exuberance.

“you know who’s playing?”

“No”, Patrick replied, shaking his bum.

“Marvin Gaye, Got to give it up”

It saddened him when the song was over, so she yanked his arm and they ran into a CD store, above the archives, they found everything. Motown records, Tina Turner, the Supremes, Louis Armstrong.

Patrick bought the best of Ray Charles and Otis Redding CDs. He played them twice through that day.

 

Their friendship blossomed,  and so did Patrick’s inquisition of the African culture.

He could watch,  A soldier’s story, 1984,  a million times,  he had the albums of the Jazziest, funkiest and soulful artists. Of his records, Ada’s favorites were Gladys Knight & the pips and Al Green.

Patrick would have endless questions about her origin.

He wanted to understand why several Nubian princesses he came across preferred weaves.  He would tell them all how beautiful they are,  whether they have a short afro or curly locks, whether they are Ugandan or Ghanian.

 

He went on to major in History.

Patrick soon learned about the part of history that has been subdued.  The scramble for Africa. The atrocities surrounding King Leopold IIs reign in the Congo-free state, the mutilation of child laborers.

He discovered that the Congo terror was not released to the public media.  It moved him to tears.

Ada noticed him sulking.

“You found out,  she said knowingly, The looting of crude oil and Benin bronze is in the past”.

She paused.

“But the present isn’t any different, why is it easier for you to migrate to the UK,  yet it easier for me to be denied entry because of the countries we each represent?  Ideally, the aftermath of neo-imperialism should yield excellent foreign policies between EU and African leaders, encouraging Africa’s growth.

“Ideally, it should” he agreed in an undertone

Ada wanted to say more about the discrimination concerning citizens of third world countries. Instead, she gave him, Chris Hedges, Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt.

Patrick would find out how rich capitalist in the USA  profit off minors by investing in private prisons. How charges for drug and gun possession are exaggerated by law enforcement. He watched the documentary, The house I live in, and he understood the systemic prejudice. He wishes he could do more.

 

He is an activist for human rights.

She is an author and an advocate for African youths. The ambassador for Nigeria in Austria.

 

Scramble for Africa

Spoils Of War

King Leopard II of Belgium

The house I live in

Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

White Noise

Don’t take this the wrong way

but who do you think you are?

You serenade me with a golden harp

yet bind my hands and feet.

You torture me,

My screams fall on deaf ears

You manipulated me in the times I trusted you.

and judge my existence with every breath I expire.

You delude yourself with illusions of control

and when I ask why,

you imagine that I’m besotted with you

I grow mundane of righteously defending my honor.

 

 

Don’t take me for a fool

I cannot be what you want me to  be

I will not cut myself  before you believe I bleed

You will not sit on your high  horse

and watch me grovel for attention

My self-esteem—

my free will must  erode your ego

and as sure as the sun shines,

nothing can hide forever.

 

 

You say we are similar

I think like charcoal and diamond.

Everyone on social media believes your facade

Today I pen the truth, the first and last time

unearthing a love story that never was

Never again will I be startled by your white noise

for what does a sociopath have in common with an alexithymic?