She said her breasts were too small;
I said they were just right; my hands could grasp
She said they hung too low;
I said I could easily reach them; lying on my back
She said her breasts were too soft;
I said good! ‘Cause that way they would not hurt my lips
And besides; the sight of them made something about me stiff
She said she could not find a bra her size;
I said she could be honest with me; bras tell lies
She said her breasts did not make her feel like a woman;
I said I’d seen a woman with big breasts live like a loser
Besides – breasts don’t make the woman
She said they did not look good at times;
I said they are always perfect in my eyes
She ignores the guy calling her in the street;
Maybe if she’d asnwered it would have gone something like this;
‘Excuse me please can I talk with you miss?
I got you in my sights and no; I won’t miss,’
She would have walked with him ‘cos she would be feeling the gist,
He would have held her hand and guided her feet
Would have stood with her in low places; beside her in high,
And helped her see her way through the mist,
But because of past drama her heart was thick;
The truth sometimes has it hard penetrating the deep,
So because of that; the look she gave him was brief,
And because of that look he would not persist
Just went about his business but his heart was stiff
Another girl wished she could help him relax a bit;
But his head was bent low so he missed the chick
And so she went on as usual; nothing really to give
All because a ‘she’ ignored the guy calling her in the streets.
It might interest you to know that when Demola opened his eyes, he did not feel any double vision, sharp pain or any of those movie clichés. No.
When he opened his eyes, he just opened them.
For a moment though honestly, he really thought he was dead.
Why? Have you ever been hospitalized in Eko Hospital?
Know that cliché about hospitals being painted in white? That hospital – or at least the ward Demola was hospitalized in took that cliché to the limit. Everything; from the tiles on the floor to the asbestos on the ceiling (typically) was white. The walls, window blinds – the small refrigerator that stood on one side of the room…even the couch were all white. But then, there was something on the couch that broke the sea of white.
Demola’s eyes widened.
He was not immediately sure of what he was looking at, but it looked curiously like a girl.
He straightened suddenly – and groaned loudly in pain. Instantly he sank back to lie on the bed, images from – earlier; it must be, flashing in his head. He closed his eyes and saw himself speeding round a corner; suddenly seeing a woman in the middle of the road bent over in what he remembered thinking was a obscene position, him twisting the wheel of the Range Rover to the left, the scream of the wheels as they scrambled for purchase on the rain-slick surface of the road, the crash…
He suddenly felt someone lean over him.
“Are you alright?” a soft voice asked.
Demola frowned mentally. That was a voice he was sure he had never heard before. A nurse?
Slowly, he opened his eyes.
Okay. Stop here if you think the next few lines describe a fantastic-looking ‘romance novel chick’. This is real life.
Anyway, Demola opened his eyes again and saw an ordinary looking girl bent over him. His first impression of her was that she looked like a drowned chicken that someone had managed to dry out. She had been crying and her mouth drooped at the corners. Which did nothing to improve her looks.
Demola frowned physically.
“Who are you?” he tried to say, but all he could do was croak. He cleared his throat and tried again.
“Who are you?” His voice was slightly clearer this time.
“Me?” the girl asked. She was wringing her hands together as though the question made her uncomfortable. She was also standing awkwardly as though she was leaning on something.
“Me?” she said again and Demola became angry.
“No, that statue standing behind you,” he retorted and almost laughed out loud as the girl actually turned her head to look for the ‘statue’. She turned back towards Demola and lowered her eyes, feeling embarrassed.
Demola felt a bit of remorse but before he could say anything she spoke, sounding nervous.
“I’m…I’m Shayo. I was there when you had…the accident happened,” her voice trailed off.
He closed his eyes, vividly remembering scenes of the accident. He remembered clearly how he had left the bar, splashing water on Femi in his anger. He remembered screeching round that corner…almost hitting that girl…
His eyes jumped open in realization.
She was the girl. The girl he had almost hit.
The girl who caused the accident!
153 died; oh what grief,
153 died; kini big deal?
Na today una don dey die; kini?!
Abeg una go rest jo! Ogini!
153 died; off the plane,
We still don’t know how many died off the streets,
Yes na! Haba; dem neva plenty reach?
Make dem dey die dey go; abegi plix!
153 died; we hope they rest in peace;
What will it take for us to let go of our peace?
Is it till dead bodies start lining the streets;
Or till we all stifle in the smell and heat?
153 died; many more to come,
These leaders publicly killing us, what’s the outcome?
People looking unconcerned in bars; how come?
The tyrants are outnumbered; the masses outgunned
153 died; but life goes on,
On those who lost loved ones it remains to mourn,
Shed tears for the dead; victims of greed,
Streets awash with blood; and the city bleeds
Oh mother! Look to your daughter; pregnant by her father,
Oh father! Look to your son, is he worthy to remember?
Be prepared to reap fruits of your silent seeds;
Hearts torn apart by sorrow; and the city bleeds
153 dead; I shed a tear for each,
With my pen I script ‘cos I’ve been denied sleep,
Words my heart can’t speak raw; cooked to a speech,
I hope this, a conscience pricks – and still the city bleeds
Alani the vulcanizer had just taken another swig from the Alomo bottle, shivering slightly as the bitter taste hit his tongue when a loud bang came from the distant corner. He started slightly and cursed as he spilled a bit of liquid from the precious bottle. “Iyala iya dat pessin,” he muttered.
And then he frowned; sitting under his dingy shed in the dripping rain on Okanlawon Street and thought: wetin be dat noise sef? Hope say no be dose OPC boys dem dey fire o.
He looked up and down the street worriedly; trying to penetrate the dense curtain of rain with his alcohol-heavy eyes, also stretching his ears to pick any other sounds apart from the tip-tap of the raindrops. But he heard nothing, and therefore mumbling to himself about how pipo wey no get life go dey disturb other pipo; he adjusted his butt on the half-soaked bench.
He coughed dryly and took a longer drought from the near-empty bottle.
Mama Bukky was in the kitchen.
In fact, she had just served a spoon of steaming ogbono into a plate and turned her head slightly to ask her daughter; Ibidun, who was standing by the door if she would like more when a loud explosion from outside their window rocked the house.
Mama Bukky screamed loudly, flinging the plate one way and spoon the other and rushing to grab her daughter rudely from the doorway. She heard the girl scream in fright but did not immediately respond; instead clutching her tighter in fear.
Without hesitating, Mama Bukky flung open the bedroom door and shoved Ibidun in before shutting the door behind them. Navigating the dark room effortlessly, she pushed the shivering girl down behind the bed and got down beside her.
As Ibidun’s shivering continued, Mama Bukky cuddled the little girl while muttering prayers for her husband and first daughter who were supposed to have arrived a while back.
A few minutes later, she realized she had no idea what the noise was.
“Make love to me Chuka,” Ndidi moaned out loud, pushing her breasts against the young boy’s eager palms. Oh lord; the boy thought, let me not wet my pants.
He wondered why he did not properly prepare for tonight when he was the main agitator. They were here, in his brother Chinedu’s chemist because he had insisted. He had seen his brother carry that Magaret girl with the paw-paw breasts into the store several times, and she always came out chuckling. And he had been wondering when it would be his turn.
Now it was his turn – and he was so nervous and scared. The furthest he had ever gone with a girl is to grope and pull at her breasts. He had never seen naked breasts before – not counting the ones he and Nonso used to spy on at the girls’ hostel back in the village, the ones in the porn movies. He feverishly rubbed Ndidi’s; all the while thinking do I just remove her blouse?
The explosion that came from up the street ended his dilemma.