Photo Credit: Kit King( Canadian visual artist)
May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen.
I have searched to the depth of the earth
And I have found nothing as horrible as death
A man without a heart,
A man without time,
He comes and leaves without a sign
Oh death! What good does thou possess
Leaving family, friends and loved ones in tears
And smile becomes an enemy to thy face
Oh death! You find no love in change
You are worse than your name
One thing hurts me more,
You steal the good ones to an early grave
And allow the bad stay on for decades
Why do you have no shame?
Why do you choose to bring pain?
But hey, sometimes you bring happy tears
By granting some wishes for eternal rest
And most times you tell us to be prepared
Forcing us to live lives free of grudge and hate
Every man has a role to play on earth
Love and passion being our watchwords
Joy and peace, our best possessions
Making sure to see the good in every deed
For soon death shall come without regrets.
Moses Daniel C.©
Later, Chika will read in The Guardian that “the reactionary Hausa-speaking Muslims in the North have a history of violence against non-Muslims,” and in the middle of her grief, she will stop to remember that she examined the nipples and experienced the gentleness of a woman who is Hausa and Muslim.
Excerpt from the short story titled A PRIVATE EXPERIENCE by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Author: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Genre: African Fiction
Page count: 243
Year published: 2009
The thing around your neck is a collection of twelve short stories telling us about Nigerians who lived through and after the years of war and colonialism. Adichie through her stories tried to show us how religion,tribalism and politics affects the lives of the many involved, most times resulting in negative consequences.
I enjoyed the stories, I wished some would have been made into a novel as they left me curious as to what might have become of the characters. Some of my favorites include,
-Jumping monkey hill
-The headstrong historian
-Arrangers of marriage
When compared to other works from her such as , Half of a yellow sun, Americanah, Purple Hibiscus etc her pattern and style of narration in The thing around your neck seemed quite different and sort of lacked technicality. But not withstanding, one had to careful with the short story titles, as you had to read the story itself before being able to grasp it’s theme.
In all The thing around your neck was intellectually stimulating as it covered various issues while making sure it reached their depths. Get a copy of the book if you haven’t read it, and if you have, please feel free to drop comments.
Photo source: pinterest
“Oh my God, it’s you. I cannot let you in right now. I’m not sure you’ll like it in here, I mean this place is a total mess” Leenie said, trying to hide from him behind the door. “It’s okay Leenie, I could help you clean up, if only you’d let me come in” he replied smiling at her. His appearance made her feel really uncomfortable. He looked like one of those angels her mom had frequently told her about in her bedtime stories as a child, all shinny and white. Those angels mom claimed were the ones who were committed by God to light and guide our way.
Leenie remained at the entrance for a while before finally deciding to let him into her apartment. He had promised to stay and even offered to help clean up her mess, and she could really use some of that. She was a complete wreck herself, yet he had looked at her without disgust. He had talked to her without complaining. As she slid the door open, he walked into her shame with such confidence that was hard to believe.
It’s sad how love is seen these days; an opportunity that one should run after against all odds. And so, when you can’t give your best fight, you’re considered a loser. Love should be considered a visitor that comes knocking when you least expect it, but you welcome it anyway as it has decided to stay not minding the condition in which it met you and your home.
It was time to return to her roots
She had been through thick and thin
And she knew better now
Where she came from, things were good
People stood their grounds
No one was known to bend or break
No matter the weather
Rather they were known for strength
They were known for perseverance
All of those things needed to see you through this journey of life
But she had lost of all of that…
Her pride, her identity, her originality?
She could barely tell who she was
And this was why she was going back
To recover her loss, to find herself
It was time to start a new life
It was time to return to her roots.
Photo source: Pinterest
“When I say to the wicked, o wicked man, you shall surely die and you do not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his perversity and iniquity, but his blood will I require at your hand”
No longer affright of the wild
that may hunt me down in shreds
But that beautiful woman
next door in dreads
that may suffocate me with a pillow
Not petrified by the gunshots of robbers
but that young man with beards
that may cut me down
like a tree with an infected bark
The world is at war with peace
Its body swimming in the bath of blood
“I no longer fear that the animals in the wild might one day hunt me to pieces, but that my neighbour who lives across the street will one day poison me to death”.
No one is born hating or hurting
We caused this to be so
Yes, YOU and I
He’s the reason she no longer trusts
She’s the reason he stopped caring
You are the reason they cannot love
And we are the reason for this chaos
What started out as an habit
Has become natural to us
You ask what it is?
” The act of destruction”, I say
Now you say, “That’s normal”
How can you say so human
CAN’T YOU SEE WITH YOUR HEART
We are gradually losing humanity
Our world is being destroyed
The air has been polluted
Filled with toxic substances of hate, jealousy,envy,anger,hyrocrisy
So one can hardly breathe, and slowly
WE ALL ARE DYING.
Do you still think this is normal?
What happened to her innocence?
Where did he keep his conscience?
Why have we shut the door to our hearts?
Why are we letting ourselves turn cynical?
Can’t you see we’re being destroyed?
And who’s to blame for this?
Yes, YOU and I
Now you ask, “What should we do?”
Well, it’s simple…
TO BUILD, NOT DESTROY
This is the way we can help
So fellow human, go fetch you tools
Tools of friendliness,kindness,loyalty
Let’s get together to accomplish this great task
Also come with special fragrances
of FAITH and LOVE
This we shall spray to freshen the air
enabling us to breathe and live again
I believe we can do this…
Yes, YOU and I.
Those nights I would hear the door creak
Nights I would helplessly shriek
Nights that left me completely weak
Those nights of things I must not speak.
Those mornings you acted as though things were okay
Mornings I hated you for such display
Mornings I thought of getting away
Those mornings I silently prayed for your doomsday.
These days I look in the mirror
My reflection is that of a child stricken with terror
These days I wish I could erase the errors
Caused by the days of my childhood horror.