You know, often times when I hear or read people give testimonies like:
“I was depressed and tired of life, I wanted to commit suicide. No one cared about me, I was an insignificant part of everyone’s life. Even my family never cared for me. The day I decided I was going to put an end to it all, an end to my life, I was walking down the road and saw this lady who smiled at me. I was so surprised I wasn’t even sure if I was supposed to smile back. I felt so special, at least one person noticed me and gave me a smile; that smile changed my life and because of that I decided against commiting suicide”
This is a piece I wrote for the stage sometime ago… I think it’s just apt for this ‘season’… So, here we go:
I’m on this stage to talk about you and I ‘cos often times, when on questionnaires or online or through some other means, we are asked to indicate our identity and we tick Nigeria, I wonder what exactly that means
I mean for a French man,he believes he is the custodian of civilization
For a German, he believes he is the epitome of knowledge and,
For an American, strength in diversity.
So for a Nigerian, what exactly?
I cower to say what’s on my mind,
What my Nation has come to represent on the sand of time…
Pain, poverty, pain and, more pain.
I never liked her
I would never admit to being jealous of her though
She always had this gentle smile, the kind seen in the movies – bright
eyes, pink lips,white set of teeth…
You could almost kiss her!
It was just perfect… too perfect.
She’d say a good morning, then accentuate it with her smile, then
add ‘have a blissful day!’
I mean, WHO IN THE WORLD SAYS ‘HAVE A BLISSFUL DAY?!'”
And the smile would always be there.
It was like she did it to taunt me,
I could hear the smile singing: ‘YOU CAN NEVER BE LIKE Me la la la la
la, SUCK IT UP.”
I hate her.
I swear, I do!
Tears fell from her eyes with the ease of autumn leaves.
In the deathly silence, I could hear her 16 year old heart fracturing and the voice of The Script moaning in my head…
When hearts break, they don’t break even…
“I never believed it would come to this,” she said clutching a tear soaked handkerchief to her chest. “I knew they argued a lot but I thought things were fine when they started hanging out together again. Just when I thought things were fine, they announced the divorce.”
WARNING: This piece is not for the faint-hearted or religiously inclined people who are unwilling to see
“I’ve been hypertensive since June 2015” he says, swirling a petri dish.
I look at him from the corner of my glasses. He’s about my height, with skin the colour of ripened dates and a head full of hair. He’s not many years older than me (and I’m a few months shy of 20) but he’s hypertensive.
… To every mother who has had to say to their angels who never heard them, ‘welcome’ and ‘goodbye’ in a moment… And to every child who never got to feel the warmth of their mother’s arms…
Yes, I named you even before my eyes set on you
Because I wanted to wake up every morning to pamper you
My arms itched to bear you
My back craved for the warmth of your body
My soul yearned to sing you lullabies
You disrupted the hormones,
We did not mind
You tossed and kicked,
My heart leaped with joy every time you did
The swollen feet were a delight to behold
Mood swings and cravings made me chuckle
Ajike was coming
My purse felt it
So did my wardrobe;
Even the neighbours
And our home.
Everything had to be perfect for the herald of Ajike
The days rolled by
My bladder held up less longer
One day, the water finally had it’s way
And the pain tore through me
Ajike was coming!
The nurses urged
The doctors poked and prodded
But, not like I’d hoped
She came without her arrival song
She came silent and gloomy
Her body, stiff and cold
Her coming shook the nurses heads
Made the doctors sigh
And brought tears to my eyes