#Jay’s super short stories 9

photo credit: D Rogale,

I slapped my chest and then cupped my full breasts. ‘Ra ra! Ah!!’ I screamed and threw myself to the ground, ignoring the calls of ‘erora ma’ from the small audience that was building to watch my dance of pain. My dance of shame. Why had I not listened to all Feyi’s warnings? She had seen through him, oh, she had seen. I should have listened. I rolled. Left then right, in the dirt of the harmattan hardened ground wailing my anguish. I had lost everything. Everything I had worked for over the years, everything I had built with blood and sweat. All of it, gone! And who could I blame? He’d come with smooth tales, and a full head of hair. His honeyed tongue promised undying love, never mind that we were from different worlds. The seventeen years I was alive before he was born were nothing to him. He wanted me. I wanted to make him happy. Bought him fancy cars and fancy houses. Took him to places on the map he pointed. How could he do this to me? Feyi had warned me that he was only here for what I had. I had slapped and sent her out. Now he’s cleaned out my bank accounts. Wiped every single one empty with the very access I’d given him as my spouse. He’s disappeared into thin air, and when I went back to ask in the places where I used to meet him, I was told that there had never been a Femi there. I slapped my chest and cupped my breasts, all I had left was pain and regret.



Safe……………………. by Yakil

photo credit: fineartamerica.com

Stay home, hunger kills
Go out and it’s sickness and disease
Take a walk, hit and run
Take a flight, crash and burn.

Perhaps I should neither go out nor stay home
Perhaps, I would not take a walk or fly anywhere.
That’s the true safe.

Do you understand? No?! I don’t too!!!
Perhaps all is safe
Or nothing at all.
It is more of what I can save then.

My body I can’t,
My mind I can
From greed and envy
From hatred and being false
This I do understand!! I hope you do too.

RITUALS…………………………..By Sule


A poem is not just paragraphs of beautiful words
it’s not a shadow of thoughts
or layers of lyrics from a good song

A poem is the comment from the depths of a beating heart
which resonates through time with the rhythm
of a continuous ritual like breathing.

A poem is you!

Blade and Bits: The hidden cut

She screwed her eyes tighter, waiting for the rejection she was sure was coming. She’d dreaded this day every day since the day she’d said yes. What madness had driven her to say yes? Her breathing had become laboured in her rising fear. Why hadn’t he said anything yet? It had been only a few seconds but it felt like an eternity.
She’d told him the truth about herself early in their relationship, on the day when they’d both been a-fire with the passions of new love and almost crossed the lines that she’d been sure would have quenched his fires. After the talk, it was agreed that they would wait until she was comfortable to try. And over the next two years, they’d both come to the agreement that their wedding night would be best. They would make it there, they were sure. There was no rush. Her fears melted away a little every day.
As the day drew closer, fears she’d forgotten came back to the surface. Old memories rushed back and brought back the old panic. She could once again remember with painful clarity, the ceremony that had changed her body and her life. She remembered the pain, the extreme an unbearable pain, when the blade cut away the bits that the elders had said would make her promiscuous if left. She remembered the ululating that the women had broken into after she had been cut. She remembered the smell of blood and pus, and the pain every time she changed the wound dressing as she healed in the decorated room where she’d been kept for weeks after the ceremony. She remembered the look of approval and the congratulations from the women who had held her down to be cut. She remembered the look of surprise and then disgust in the eyes of the first man she had let see her. She remembered how he’d slowly recoiled and dressed up. He’d left with a promise to call her. He never did. It wasn’t much different with the next. He too would have left the same way if she hadn’t begged him to stay. Then she remembered the pain when he finally took her and made her a woman. So much pain! Like the one before him, he too never called.
It was many years and a wedding ceremony later and here she was again, lying exposed and waiting to be rejected. Her eyes were still tightly shut and her hands fisted into balls at her sides when she heard him say, ‘open your eyes. Let me see you.’ She took a deep breath in and obeyed. Nothing in the world could have prepared her for what they saw when her eyes opened. He sat at the base of the bed, looking at her with eyes brimming with love and awe. Then he said ‘you are beautiful,’ and with those three words, her years of fear eased away and she knew they would be okay.


Your name has lost its power
Who knew, who knew
That it wouldn’t have it forever
Who knew, who knew.

Your name has lost its power
Who knew, who knew
That one day I’d be stronger
Who knew, who knew

Your face has lost its power
Who knew, who knew
That it’d for me stop being a charmer
Who knew, who knew.

Your voice has lost its power
Who knew, who knew
That it would stop lighting my fires
Who knew, who knew

Your words have lost their power
Who knew, who knew
That I’d stop being a believer
Who knew, who knew

You have lost your power
Who knew, who knew
Over me you’ve no more power
Whoo hoo, Whoo hoo.

#Jay’s super short stories 8

‘What do you want?’ It was a simple enough question, but as the seconds passed after he asked it, I realised that I was afraid to answer. What could I say? We were seated in a restaurant that anyone would call posh, eating a meal so delicious it was sinful. The music was really mellow and Rinde, my date, was out-of-this-world gorgeous. When my friend Alice had insisted on setting me up on a date with her cousin, I hadn’t expected him to be so breath taking. Two seconds after I’d picked up my jaw from the ground, I became suspicious of him. Why was he still single? He, from the information I’d gotten from Alice, was by everyone’s standards eligible. He had a great job in an oil company in Port Harcourt, drove a fancy Mercedes, went to church regularly enough, spoke intelligently and was so far a gentleman. Why hadn’t he been snagged by some woman? Lagos was certainly not in short supply of ‘sharp girls’.
The question hung in the air between us and when it seemed that I might never answer, he said ‘Well maybe I should go first. I want everything. A life I can enjoy and be proud of, doing a job that I never have to hide from my loved ones. I want a woman who enjoys being alive and will share her joys and struggles with me. I want to wake up one day and realise that I have spent my time doing the things that I love, being with a woman I love, raising our kids and teaching them to love.’ He stopped talking for a few seconds and I heard my heartbeat in my throat, and then he asked again, ‘what do you want?’



Learning hate,
Leaning on these poisoned gates,
Pushing, pushing until they give way
Stepping in,
Losing faith.

Learning hate,
Pieces of my soul chipping away,
Conscience eroding, fading
Turning grey.
Losing my way.

Learning hate,
Love and compassion melting away,
Wax in place of what was once clay,
Losing patience by the day.

Learning hate,
Pushing away love, embracing pain.
Changing, hardening in every way,
Becoming this person,
Who has lost faith.