Thinking of Father’s Day, and consequently my father, brings a rush of emotions, many, significantly unpleasant. Growing up, far away from understanding myself, I had seen myself father perhaps as how every young child sees his father-a god, a protector,the someone to please, the someone to make sure you didn’t get into any mischief, one who could beat you, one who you must fear.
Now, when I look back, I wonder if that idolised, idealised image of father wasn’t the best to have. It after all requires no effort but puerile ignorance from you. Now that, as the saying goes, I have grown teeth, I have failed miserably to think of my dad like my younger self had. Now, I see myself in capacity enough to judge my dad’s every action towards us. This is unfair, that is irresponsible. I can, in words and numbers, say the many things wrong with a particular decision my dad has taken regarding family. But I know that it is perhaps the newness of this- my being able to assess and judge Father’s wrong actions, for it is the wrong ones I’m concerned about- that gives me the boldness to self righteously condemn his wrong-doings. I cannot however dispute this fact: dad is a dad; I’m not. Then again, dad is ‘the’ dad; I’m not. From my tone, I sound hypocritical then. Condemning myself for my stance, and still continuing in my ways. This is because I aim for a balance.
I want people and indeed myself to read this and see a son- not a stupid child. I understand my father- a kind man with many plans gone sour. I understand his faults already, how it eats at him that certain things didn’t fit into his design for our lives, his frustration at how he can no longer stably give us what he had so desired- security. This is why I say I’m not a child but a grown man. Can I now say that I’m ready to become a father? Of course not. For the courage alone, to leave bachelorhood, settle down and start a family, he deserves my everlasting respect. What I really want is father-son understanding. That understanding that goes deeper than words,than signs, than blood- too much to ask perhaps. What I truly want is that understanding that makes daddy know when not to say certain things and when to say something. When to be all smiles and when to be stern and serious. When to hold tightly and when to loosen that grip. And if someone thinks that by desiring this, I equally desire to control my dad, they cannot be more far from the truth. But I could be accused of wanting perfection, yes I could. So for Father’s Day, I’ll wish for this, as unrealistic, unattainable as it may be. I won’t wish for a completely changed father who would do as I command. Nor would I wish for a dad who would buy me the whole world and protect me, with money, from the world’s strains. And no, not a little of another person’s dad in mine nor a totally perfect dad, no. Just that understanding, that transcends all.
Yes, lets dance and wave the flag or do what it is that is done on Father’s Day. lets celebrate these men- breadwinners- who’d brought other men and women, as they also were brought, into this world. lets celebrate these set of humans whose decisions have ultimately made, for good or bad, the lives of us; sons and daughters. lets not seethe at another wrong doing, but remember the good times. And if there be no one to pinpoint in recent memory, lets go back to our early years and remember that he’s the one first tied our shoe laces, taught us to press our little shirts, rode us on his back every evening even though he was tired, gave us, from time to time, pieces of invaluable advice, even if we don’t remember what they were about, disciplined us to stop that bad habit, the bad thing that could have ruined our lives, protected us. Lets remember that he was there for us when everywhere was dark, that he was there for us when we shouted ‘daddy, daddy, daddy,’ in our little excited voices as he came back from work. Lets not forget, never forget, the special memories, funny or serious, bright or dark, that we spent with him. Because,here is the day of deep reflection on that special person. I, for one, am glad I have a daddy I can celebrate today. For I know, I could not have been this person, if not for his hands- no matter how harsh I thought it was then- that moulded me. His arms that cocooned me from the roughness of life. His mouth that advised me on what and what not to do,say, be. And having said all these, one thing only remains to be said: Thank you daddy! Thank you very much sir! I love you!
A Gentleman’s Promise
When the rains should decide
To come in cats and dogs, in deluge,
I shall be there with my brolly.
I shall cover you from its miaows and barks
And furl not til it ceases.
I shall sweep you off your feet
And carry you through mire and murky
To my home where I shall put you
On a throne of gold and purple velvet
Your feet cushioned in matching hassock
I shall bestow you with gifts and my service.
Where no man had thought to kiss you,
In that place, shall i, if you permit
I shall put in your tongue praise for me
And bring out sounds from you,
You didn’t fancy existed.
I shall take you to Papa and Mama
This is who I love, I shall say
To Pastor and church
And before God I shall say I do
We shall become one.
It shall be We against the world
We bearing offsprings
We building together a family
Time shall count away
And senility greet us
We shall have conquered the world
And decide to conquer hereafter next
We shall leave together.
But even as we leave
My promise shall be as potent
As when I first uttered it.
Call It Orison If Thou Mayest
Thou creative talent
When hast thou taken me to?
To which palace hast thou made my feet grace?
What food hast mine plate been filled with because of thee?
What raiment hast thou adorned my back with?
Which lip hast thou made my name a constant hymn?
Is thy purpose for me hope alone?
Hast thou not any plan to make me
Famous and in good fortune?
Prithee to tell me thy agenda,
For mine eyes look thy way daily
And thy failing have been brought to bear.
Bring me thee, fame and fortune
And give hope and promise thy deserved rest
For if thou obey me not
I shall turn to mine hands for daily bread
And thou shall perish in silence.
He and Humanity
A: Hide all sharp objects’
B: What about his sharper tongue?
We are still in danger!
A: Stay mute in the dark
He’ ld be here soon.
B: Forget it, he ‘ld feel for us
We still in danger!
A: We can run away together
It will take moment for him to miss us.
B: Then he ‘ll come for us in full force
And we ‘ll have nowhere to hide
‘Cos, we are gold fishes in his vision
And his ire and wrath shall fall on us
We are still in danger.
A: Than let’s end it all,
Take our lives- the one he threatens.
B: To what end shall that act bring?
He ‘ld be merciless to the others
Remember there are others
They are still in danger!
A: Let’s kill him! Let’s end it all!
B: Young mind, you fail to understand
He is immortal, he lives in us humans,
He ‘ll never die.
We are all in danger!
A: Let’s extricate, exorcise him out of us
B: We ‘ll lose ourselves too,
Understand, we can do nothing.
A: That’s it? Are we hopeless?
B: We are not hopeless,
We are him, he is us.
It is in our accepting and facing him,
That we conquer,
That we become overcomers of him,
That we are no longer in danger.
An Artist Plight II: Shattered Dream.
Reading with lizards
Sleeping with rats
Plates of yesteryears
Still on my floor
Which is by the way creaking,
Don’t knock on the door
Don’t tap on the floor
Don’t look through the window
You may break something
You just can’t pay for.
Where’s my bottle?
Where’s its cork where i sip from?
My shaek’s so spacious
I can’t move easily
But spacious it is
Accommodates me, rats and creatures
Its wall are just as beautiful
With moss and mushrooms
To make a pot of soup
My house’s paint ‘d with the word
Don’t pity me or my surrounding
I have a plan
When I’m through with my book
For I’m a writer,
I’ Id make it.
It’s pages are now useful on my floor
Squeezed and forming a pagoda,
A heap of beauty.
Ironic! How useful it is now on my floor
Publishers thought it was not marketable
They thought wrong!
However I tired to rewrite
They thought wrong still!
They should set the beauty on my floor
And regret their arses off.
I won’t listen to them anymore,
I ll just live with the beauty on my floor.
Spirit of Eki
The sounds of iron door opening up for the day,
Sun rays creeping into open stalls
High lighting inviting commodities unsold,
Be it alive, perishable, inanimate, it’s there.
Shading is an ironic word for displaying goods
Come rain and sunshine
Market will always be market, buoyant
“Aunty, buy” calls out a seller,
Another is like ” Big boy, I have what you want.”
They know your minds, these sellers,
They have seen the longings in your eyes
They have understand your dreams,
Reveries you are yet to fantom.
Haggle as you may, you can never cheat them
They gain times over.
The place who salves man’s needs
Nothing shall remain unproperous in this place
No one shall come and go empty handed,
No soul shall come and go without a big smile
Everyone is satisfied here.
Although the market shuts its eyes
It is never fully asleep
It’s there for the needy’s need to be met.
For man to exist,
A New Day! Happy – Go – Lucky Feeling Tada!!!
Sings the melodies of my heart
As I open my eyes to sunshine
I get off bed with a bounce
And that bounce fills my heart,
My mind, my blood, oh my, oh my!
And I lief dance around and about.
What is it I begin to ask my inner man
Have you found out a big secret about me
From the Lord of Host?
Did He tell you something really great
That’s happening to me today?
Am I gonna get a promotion or
Is money smiling my way today?
Or am I gonna meet someone beautiful
Tell me inner man, what do you say?
Come on, come on, tell me the great secret
I know something really good is coming my way
Else you wouldn’t wake me to such sweet mood
Of internal bliss and external birthe.
If a large meal of greatness is mine today
At least give me a morsel of it
So that if I’m asked why I’ m so light hearted
I’ I d have something to say.
If such fore knowledge exist
Prithee let me be a guest of it
For I haven’t see any sign of such brightness
Except the one emanating from my inner man.