AWOOF

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He climbs through thorns to reach the ripe clusters.
He stretches an arm, they fall to the ground.
The monkey shows up, picks them and scampers.
The climber came down, leaves were all he found.
Dazed by bane, dumb with pain, he stood aloof.
Gone with another’s spoils, he ate “awoof”.

With a loving heart and strong arms he works;
He would not have his wedded bride suffer.
Yet behind him, his dear friend jeers and mocks:
He digs the well but I drink the water.
Sadly he is a fool under his roof.
In his heart, his friend cheers himself “awoof”.

Hungry souls flood the halls and fill the pews;
Sad, bruised and broken, all they have is hope.
The preacher speaks, he says I have good news.
It’ll wash all your fears away, buy my soap.
Yet all they get is brainwash, still they goof.
The preacher pats his tum, he sneers “awoof”.

His barn is stocked with huge and healthy tubers,
Countless silos spill over with fine grains.
With teary eyes he asks the poor farmers:
“Please just a tuber and some little grains”.
They share their harvest with kind-hearted grief.
In light-hearted chants, he bellows “awoof”.

Her big belly, comfort of barren years
Now in labour, she pushes for her prize.
Then she wakes up in a sad pool of tears,
There lies a child, without life in its eyes.
“Ti’s done madam; she’ll never find a proof”.
She pays the agreed price and sings “awoof”

The monkey’s fully grown, strong and swinging.
The man’s still as sneaky, now in his prime.
The woman’s as sound as the sun’s golden.
One thought they share; “it’s surely not my time”.
Then comes the reaper with his sword and stealth.
As he takes them home, he sings them “awoof”.

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‘Awoof’ is a Nigerian pidgin english term that commonly refers to something ‘free’, that which one gets without having to work for it. This often includes things gotten through dubious means even at the expense and detriment of other people. Hence it often represents greed.

BLACK GOLD

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Your plains have become fields of blood.
Those you blessed have found it is anathema.
Your gains have become skyscrapers abroad.
The wealth of you has left peasants no richer.
Voyaging your home keep peons in flood,
Yet these waters hold no fish for the Pekan.
Black gold, the reverie of the poor and clod,
The vial from which the rich perfume their “Kaftan”.

Your viscous beauty has stirred hearts to lust.
So many have guiled, lied vied and fought.
Ogling soldiers of fortune kiss the dust;
Queerly they become you whom they sought.
Your ebony fame has left many sons with crumbs.
Hitherto, we satiated with the pride you ring.
Now, our giant egos overweigh our empty tums.
We grope, blinded from gazing your untapped ming.

Your miners came, raped and ravished our land.
Careless about the seeds and tubers that feed us,
They robbed our soils of vigour, left it bland.
Our trees and crops were blessed with a death curse.
O black gold you who has poisoned our waters!
You black gold, have starved our children!
We cried for our soils and wept for our rivers,
The case we pled, on deaf ears they have fallen.

Will I now harangue you o black gold?
Then I would be a murderer of justice.
It’s those bulgy Guts long “Agbadas” enfold,
Who have entombed our gains and your promise;
Stealthily they have robbed you of your shine.
Now we ponder what your glory was and be.
On them this guilt must stick like grime,
Till their gloomy greed will glare for all to see.