CRUEL LOVE

CRUEL LOVE

CRUEL LOVE

Thursday, January 15, 1970

 

6:00pm, Umuahia, Eastern Nigeria

 

The crackling sound emanating from buildings engulfed in flames and the cacophony of distraught voices was the background orchestra of the tragic scene which symbolized the leftovers of a vicious war. The Mother Earth got drunk after taking gulps of fratricidal blood shed by brothers and friends now turned foes. The war started with a subtle conflict amidst citizens of a country who gave themselves over to the fleeting deceits of hate and sentiments rather than the inundating comfort of love and reality. The silent grumblings in the heart of men crawled to the public square of callousness until it formed a gigantic mound of war which almost tore the nation into shreds. Now that the war was over, the survivors can only count themselves lucky and fortunate not to have been a victim.

 

Inside Ojukwu’s bunker, a feminine but confident voice fills the room; an old rickety radio on a wooden table produced the voice of Evelyn Okafor, a renowned newscaster for Radio Nigeria as she talks about the proclamation of Gen. Yakubu Gowon: “No Victor, No vanquished”.
The Biafra Republic just died before their very eyes, everything happened too fast for them to believe or digest; the audacious commando, Ojukwu already in exile, Philip Effiong just officially surrendered in Lagos. The unbelief, the disappointment and the defeat was well mapped out on the faces of the beleaguered soldiers. The Federal Republic of Nigeria won the 32 months of a bloody Civil War, it was as simple as that and thinking of what will become of their future was a pure induction into the Hall of dilemma.

 

Captain Christopher Adeagbo, a tall handsome fair-complexioned broad-chested soldier, one of the very few Yoruba soldiers who fought for Biafra, he had lived all his life in the East and speaks Igbo language fluently; he schooled at the Government College Umuahia where he became the Head boy due to his contagious brilliance.

Nigerian soldier

Chris stretched his legs and hands on his sick bed as he tried to change the position of his aching body; his fair yellow skin was decorated with blisters and scars from different injuries sustained during the war. He had for the past one week being hospitalized right here after he sustained a major injury from a Molotov cocktail blast which should have killed him. Nurses Jane and Amarachi had no doubt given their best to ensure that Chris was in a good condition.

 

“The Junior Commando” as he was fondly called by his friends was once a student of Political Science at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and it was in his sophomore year that he had the uncontrollable urge to join the Army though it was against the wish of his parents who were University Professors. His parents fled to the Ibadan at the moment when the fiery furnace of the war started brewing. His second fallout with his parents was when he told them that he would like to marry the lady of his dreams; the ravishing beauty with an angelic voice, Ngozi Okeke. The wedding became the talk of the town as he eventually tied knots with the Enugu-born lady, one of the beautiful cousins of Ojukwu. His parents were strongly dispassionate with the marriage as they wanted him to marry a lady from their tribe (Yoruba). Truly Chris was no longer in the good books of his parents but he had earlier sent a letter to them that he would like to come back to Ibadan and settle down, he pleaded with them to allow him come over with his injured wife who lost her left leg to the war. He wished that they would be merciful enough to accept him and his wife especially at this moment when they both needed help. Every time he remembered the pains of his decisions, the thoughts of his dogged, strict and no-nonsense parents would always flood his mind. He had lived with them long enough to have memories of their unforgiving spirit and harshness to neighbors.

 

Despite the arguments going on amidst the able-bodied soldiers in the bunker, Chris was lost in the loch of his overwhelming thoughts; he wanted a new life for himself at least to start his family since it was barely a week he got married to Ngozi that the war commenced on a full scale.
The gentle tap of Nurse Amarachi brought Chris back to the Bunker as he let out a weary smile to mask the wrinkles of his depressing thoughts. As a soldier he had learnt always to be strong and to exude a high morale.

 

“I hope your body is finally taking shape as we await the arrival of Dr. Donga for the authorization of your discharge today.” Amarachi said softly with a caring gesture.

 

Chris scratches his bald head with his bandaged hand and replied in his baritone voice; “I am better. Thanks a lot, Amarachi for your care and concerns.”

 

“I have got a letter for you from Ibadan, it came in few hours after the war ended” said Amarachi as she handed the letter to him and catwalked her way back to the Nurses’ Station.

 

Chris gently opened the letter; he uncovered its contents with his heart racing like a deer in search of a brook. He fed his eyes with the content of the letter time again and again until streams of tears flowed than his eyes. He quickly wiped the tears, he needed to sleep to reset his dramatic day; the pills of Valium V tumbled down his throat and he was soon fast asleep snoring like a tired Elephant. Until his heart…

 

Saturday, January 18, 1970

 

7:00pm, Ibadan, Western Nigeria

 

Not all families could afford a radio set talk less a television set. It was seen as a luxury of the wealthy by many especially at a moment like this when the war just ended. Professor Lucas Adeagbo, an erudite professor of archaeology and a proud grandfather in his early sixties was seated on the same sofa with his wife in their spacious living room. They paid rapt attention to the Black and White television set right in front of them. It was time for the 7’O’clock news on Western Nigerian Television (WNTV) and it was a daily ritual for them to watch.

 

“And that is the news at 7:00pm, but before I leave, I would like to inform the general public about the dead bodies of the following Biafran soldiers which are yet to be recovered;

 

Col. James Ruskins
Capt. Nicky Ajayi
Maj. Gen. Yunus Dauda
Capt. Gregory Abajo
Col. Kalu Alkali
.
.
.
.
Capt. Christopher Olamide Adeagbo
Gen. Frederick Dende.

 

If you know any of them please inform the General Officer Commander (GOC) of the nearest barracks to you,… ”

Professor Grace Adeagbo let out a deafening scream before the completion of the news. The death of Chris came as a shock to both of them.

Screaming at her bewildered husband amidst streams of tears rolling down her wrinkled cheeks:
“Yeeeeee!!! My son is gone, Baba Chris,  my Captain is dead, this is so painful. What could have killed my brave son? But we pleaded with him to come back home but only that he should not come here with that his Igbo wife.”

They were soon in their Peugeot 404 as the driver sped off to Odogbo Barracks with the parents of Captain Chris in the backseat.

amputated leg

They later found out that Chris committed suicide after receiving their letter on his sick bed. The contents of the letter talked expressly about the hatred of the parents for the wife of Christopher, they never wanted her to come along with Christopher talk less of a wife without a left leg. It was an eyesore for their exalted state.

 

Unknown to them, the letter of Chris was a ploy to test their love. He lost his wife to the war and his left leg was amputated after he was rescued by the whiskers from last week’s blast. He concluded that if HIS PARENTS DO NOT LOVE HIM ENOUGH TO LOVE HIS “ONE-LEGGED” WIFE THEN THEY CAN NEVER LOVE A ONE-LEGGED CHRIS.

 

***Fiction inspired by the Nigerian Civil War (May 1967 – January 1970).

P.S.: Love those who cannot reciprocate the love. This in itself is LOVE. I love this quote from 1989 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Dalai Lama: “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive.”


© 2015 by Osho Samuel Adetunji

 

About the Author

Osho Samuel Adetunji is a graduate of Mechanical Engineering from Nigeria’s premier University, University of Ibadan. He is a poet, a blogger, a Public Speaker with a knack for short stories, inspirational articles and poems. He is a great thinker, creative and dexterous young man who does not only believe in excellence but also extols the tenets of discipline, hard work and effectiveness. He is an award-winning individual who is multifaceted and consistently measures success by effective impact.

He is a writer per excellence with articles published on VAVANE AFRICA, THE SCOOPNG, KONNECT AFRICA, Paarapo and Home zone media. He co-founded THE COURTROOM in 2012 with Tijani Mayowa. He is the founder of KREATIVE DIADEM, a new initiative which kicked off on March 1, 2015.
He is an inspirational young man who is addicted to going an extra mile in all facets of life. He is also a lover of football, tennis and boxing. You can follow him on Twitter with the handle: @inisamosho

 

 

 

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THE BEAUTIFUL TROUBLE

THE BEAUTIFUL TROUBLE

BEAUTIFUL TROUBLE

Baba Risi has gone
to the market
to bargain for goods
not foods
nor clothings
Baba Risi has gone
to the market
to buy feud
war,
envy,
and apathy,

 

Baba Risi pocket is filled
and leaking
with gold
So,
he has gone to the market
to acquire trouble

 

The elders says
when you seek trouble
and it refuse you
seek another wife
Baba Risi has gone
to the house of Ogunmoyero
to seek for Aduke’s hand
in conjugal
He has given unto them
wine and kolanut

 

Beautiful trouble

Beautiful trouble

Baba Risi has built
another hut in his courtyard
in preparation of Aduke’s arrival
The huts in Baba Risi’s courtyard
Is now four
Baba Risi has acquire
with his money,
beautiful trouble.

 

ODEBODE KARIMOT

 

About the Author

Odebode Karimot is an undergraduate of Law in the prestigious Obafemi
Awolowo University,ile-ife.A passionate poet who derive internal peace
in conversing with her muse.She is the second of four children born
and bred in the ancient city of Ibadan,Nigeria.She believe the world
can be driven in the right direction with her pen.

 

 

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WHAT WE SEE

WHAT WE SEE

WHAT WE SEE

 

We see bullets of different shapes,
houses without walls, streets bereft
of feet, trees burdened with swollen
bodies, a field of corpses. bedsheets
stained with blood of those whose
spirits roam in the air.

What we see

What we see

 

We see the sky garnished with darkness,
children calling their parents’ names
with tears dotting their faces.
We see the holes in the moon,
the dirges in the songs of the
birds that howl as we leave to
mourn our beloveds.

 

RASAQ MALIK

 

About the Author

Rasaq Malik is a graduate of the University of Ibadan. His poems have appeared in online literary journals and magazines. He is presently awaiting the publication of his debut poetry collection.

 

 

 

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THE LAST DELIVERY

THE LAST DELIVERY

THE LAST DELIVERY

Sam is at his window. The house is emptier than ever. He just came back from a conference on new methods of brain surgery. As usual he played a compilation of old french love songs; those songs from the 60’s have a cooling effect on his nerves and a refreshing one on his memories. Marcia… And always that name… Passing by slowly and silently like a smooth wind from the silent sea at dusk, touching and embracing his whole body. The young doctor brings up the glass of iced scotch to his lips but he doesn’t drink. He closes his eyes.

The door bell rings. He crosses the parlour where all his distinctions are proudly telling his numerous achievements. Sam has always come first and the world has always rewarded him in various domains. The bell rings a second time, but he is already opening the door. A beautiful black lady is standing in front of him with a kind of smile which opens up flowers at night. She is a perfect stranger with a familiar face. The very truth is that, Sam has never seen her before. But Sam seems to know her. And she seems to know him.

– Marcia.

– Sam.

And they stare at each other like two tigers on the verge of the final assault. The passion in their eyes is enough to express their burning desire. Marcia’s lips are half closed, thus capturing Sam’s eyes. A lady living near passes and greats Sam with a slice of jealousy in the eyes, but he doesn’t respond. He can’t even hear her. She doesn’t insist and goes her way desperately. They’re still at the doorstep getting closer. There are distances between the two pairs of lips as the flight to one another looks a whole trip. A tumultuous and breathtaking travel which keeps all the passengers waiting for something special. Something unique in a genre just like the h-hour of a party. And the lips touch, and the lips merge, and the lips melt making both bodies float like a flake of snow on a silent starry summer night. The French songs keep playing from a distance and both Sam and Marcia are now dancing like flowers in the parlour. They kiss passionately and hold each other as if their lives would end the next coming second.

– Marcia.

– Sam.

– You are so beautiful. I…

– No. Please don’t say it. You would hurt me.

– Marcia.

– Oh Sam. I…

– Please. Don’t. Please. Not now.

They whisper their names and they kiss at the same time. The blue skies are gradually upgrading to deeper blue, getting the chanting birds going home.

But to Sam and Marcia, that means less than nothing. Their kisses have taken them where time and tide can wait for them and for eternities.

Last Delivery

Last Delivery

The doorbell rings again and they don’t hear. It rings for the second time.

– Marcia.

– Sam.

The lady goes to the kitchen to get something to drink whilst Sam goes to the door. He has his glass of iced scotch in his hand. The whisky and the ice cube have become one. He puts it on the table and opens the door. It is the girl who works for the usual delivery company. She has another package for him. «You smile like an angel…» he told her the first time she came to deliver a parcel. And that smile has never changed.

– Good afternoon Mr Sam.

– Good afternoon Marcia.

Sam saw her name the first time she came; that was when he signed the delivery voucher.

– What do we have today?

– We will discover later Sir.

– You can call me Sam.

– Yes Sir… Sorry. Sam.

– Can I ask you a favour?

– I don’t know… Sam… I have to rush now…

– Marcia. I had a chat with Clandy last night over the phone.

Marcia turns her back and rushes out.

– Marcia! Sam tries to hold her back, but she escapes and leaves.

Clandy is Marcia’s best friend and her direct boss at the delivery company. Marcia tells her any little thing she has in mind. Clandy used to be the one to do the deliveries. She loves Sam but never succeeded making him love her in return. Tired of waiting for Sam to take the first step, she asked for her friend to take that area for deliveries. Sam and Marcia fell in love at first sight. Clandy revealed him that Marcia was in love too.

 

It is   around 9pm when the bell rings. Usually a very harassing neighbour known as Lolikat comes at that time, with a funny reason just to spend some time with the very polite man. He doesn’t answer. The bell rings several times again. He finally decides to go open and speak his mind. Sam opens the door with authority. But it is not the boring Lolikat. It’s an unexpected pleasant surprise.

– Marcia…

– Sam…

This time it is not a dream. It is not an afternoon wandering. Marcia is standing there at the door. The French songs are playing, the glass of scotch is on the table, and they are both naturally and passionately kissing and whispering tender promises.

 

Short Story by Author Ray NDEBI.

 

The Author of Last Delivery

My name is Théodore René Ndebi, born in Cameroon. I graduated in Banking Management. But what really makes me proud and happy is WRITING !!!!! I started writing around 1990. I write the most I can.

I mostly write for children’s future. As a child, I had always dreamt of a world where poor children and orphans could be happy as well. I have many unpublished collections in French: Chaque Jour Un Poème, Rêve D’un Soir, La Missive Du Petit Prince, Suis-Je Assez Bien Pour Toi… I’m also author of unpublished novels in French (Cierge Noir, Plus Violent Que L’amour, Les Fruits De La Tempête…). My first published novel; THE LAST GHOST/Son Of Struggle got published in 2013 by AuthorhouseUK; it appears in the LOS Angeles Times Festival Of Books Catalogue 2014 Page 8. Available online @ Amazon, Kindle, AuthorhouseUK, Barnes & Noble, Indie. I wrote numerous award winning texts. I am a Book Reviewer and Translator. I am a member of OneAfricanChild since 2013 and Co-Founder of Le Salon Du Livre Yaounde-Cameroon. You can check my works on: authorrayndebi.wordpress.com.Ray Ndebi on Facebook, @RTNdebi on Twitter, Facebook Page My Soul & Mon Ame.

 

 

 

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ANANSE

ANANSE

ANANSE

Ananse, remember,

The pitchers on the table,

The stenciled flower vases at the terrace,

And the embroidered kaftans!

I knew you when you were black.

 

Remember,

The death of your father,

Beneath the cracks of the slavers whip,

Wither their whims and that of your king!

Your colour is black, Ananse,

I knew you when your name was not Nigga!

 

Ananse

Ananse

Remember home, Ananse.

The farms are waiting,

And your maidens too,

You are the King of your country,

Not a waiter at McDonalds.

 

Habeeb Kolade Professor X

 

About the Author of Ananse

Habeeb Kolade also known as Professor X is a creative writer and entrepreneur. He currently works at Ventra Media Group, a british marketing agency. He is the Creative director of Market Ibadan Business Festival, CEO of StrictlyUI and Hermosa Marketing. He works with startups to build their market presence. His facebook ID is Habeeb Professorr X Kolade and you can follow him on twitter at @Habeeb_X.

 

 

 

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