Remember not to forget this twenty one-word definition. You will be in soup if you ever do. Mr. Edward, my Literature teacher will whip your bombom. I mean very hard. Yes! Very very hard.
On that day, “your name will be sorry”, as he repeatedly say when warning us on the penalty of forgetting the definition of a sonnet. I was a good stereographer. Bet me, I will not be in soup. I will give back Mr. Edward his definition as he gave it in class. I even defined Epic as a peom with fourtheen lines. I taught all poems are of two rhyming stanzas. I failed the question on Epic.
Let me spare you a little bit of Mr. Edward Sonnet story. I taught I was writing a poem. This is not written in stanzas and does not have a rhyming couplet at the end. This is the songs of my motherland.
I remember the folktale story hours. Nobody told us the time to gather for the tales. When the ‘onwa abali’ (the half moon), comes out we formed a circle, each sitting on his own personal old dwarf-wooden ‘oche isekwu’. The story teller will sit at the centre. My mother usually carries the old folding x-shaped wooden chair or the metal frame chair decorated with ropes of different colours to support sitting and relaxation. This chair is meant for elders. Remember, keep your ‘oche isekwu’ where you will find it so easily. You dare not carry anybody kitchen chair, especially the one that belongs to our lastborn. She will cry till her voice is heard by the neighboring palm-roofed houses. This means that you will sit on my mother old-wooden mortal – my father narrated.
My father sang this song to us, and I will teach my children the song. This is our country songs of hope. A never coming fourteen lined poem.
Youths are the leaders of tomorrow
Nigeria, my motherland will be great
The young shall grow
Go back to the farm, there is food to eat
The labours of our leaders past shall not be in vain
We are the centre-piece of Africa
unity, peace and justice shall reign
We are the giants of Africa
Remember to sing this song, especially the octave. Sing it with harps and lyre; with tambourine and dancing; with strings and pipe; with resounding cymbals. Sing the song … our songs of never coming hope
Let me state this emphatically; ‘this is one of the few countries in the world and one of the many in Africa were our politicians govern with careless abounding. Today, the ‘open conspiracy of silence’ in the killings of hundreds by the Fulani herdsmen, suggest how well our leaders politik even with the life of the common citizens. And when COW is involved, guess what? The politik becomes rougher. Better terms like ‘community clashes’ are keenly used to hide their conspired failure to act. To better defend you (in the termed communal clashes), they proffer for ‘cow colonies and grazing reserves’. What an irony. This is an aberration. It shows lost of confidence in our leaders’ ability to protect us. Then I sing for you, ‘peace and security shall reign’.
“The young shall grow and will definitely become the leader of tomorrow”…echoes line 1 and 3. The truth be told, ‘the young is growing dwarf and will remain a servant to tomorrow’. That may sound harsh, but it is the bitter-saving truth. The earlier you know it, the better freed you become. Now let me ask; how can they encourage the SME when they enrich themselves with importation? They continue to create UNemployment opportunities for the youth and crime enabling environment. How can you grow in an environment with the syndrome, ‘the old gets it all? Even in situation where there is a vacant seat to fill, you, I mean YOU…the less privileged youth who is neither connected nor has a godfather will never occupy that vacant post…better still, the DEAD would. And you still sing that you are the leaders of tomorrow- even of today, you are not. It is a song of hope.
The lyrics says; ‘everybody, (especially the youth) should go back to the farm’. What is the government holistic actions and blueprint to take us to the farm? Is it in the same farm where we risk our ordinary subsistence farm products as cow feeds or where we risk our life to Fulani herdsmen attacks? Even when they initiate programmes like the Operation Feed the Nation, they develop and convert it to private farm empires and in most cases share the funds/resources among the few privileged Napoleons. And I further ask; how can they green our nation when they own 10ens of oil wells? How can they build functional refineries and end the reoccurring fuel scarcity and price hike issues when they constitute large percentage of the marketers of petroleum products?
Now, we still hear the echoes of hope. A six line Change song. A sestet of hope. The verse2 of our sonnet, with no rhyming pattern. Sang with a loud cracking voice. Composed by the prayer worriers and sang by the ushers. A soar to our never-coming hope.
Change has come
We have defeated terrorism
We (will) create “thousands” of jobs for the youth.
We are fighting corruption
Fuel scarcity will end soon, just endure
We are supporting SME (the local made goods)
It is high time we leave the choir stand. A mental re-orientation spiced up with revolution can only change the fortunes of our lyrics. A break please, I need to clear my throats.
“Songs of Victory”: My Epic to my Motherland (II)….Ezenwoko Miracle (waiting…)