Still My Baby

Little one

Can you not grow so quickly?

So that you may continue to fit

In the crook of my arms

Where you are most safe


Your first word said

I watched; proud

But as I remember

Despair courses through me

Because I know this world

For the chameleon it can be


Your first steps taken

Just as you will step into high school

Emotions in a knot

My arms held out

Should you become a target for bullies

Have some teacher put you down

Get your innocent heart broken

By a teenage boy

Who knows nothing of how to handle your affection



You can now ride a bike

I fear that I have

Taught you something sinister

As you may ride a different one

Sometime in the future

When I become overprotective

And you say –

I’m 17! You can’t keep bossing me around

I shudder to think

You will pedal hastily away from me

Leaving me guilty

Of being too hard on you

Or giving you the means

To run from me


My greatest fear

One so wrong and selfish

Is of you

Becoming a strong woman

One who does not need me


Little one

Why can’t you stay little forever?



I hate exercise. Always have. Even more so now because of what happened. I was sitting in the interrogation room in my relatively new workout clothes and wondering what was happening on the other side of the two-way mirror. I did that for about 5 minutes before the detective decided to grace me with his presence. I rolled my eyes internally because I had seen enough TV shows to know that whatever he was reading so intently was not important. Give me some credit.

He sat. I sat up.

“Miss Lesi. Thanks for waiting.”

Not like I had a choice.

“I figured it’s the least I could do.”

“Can you explain how you found the body?”

“I thought you were going to slowly lead up to that but okay. I was running or attempting to run when I saw the bling so I moved closer. I called 911 when I saw her.”

“Do you usually attempt to run in this neighbourhood?”

“Umm no but I’m trying to lose a couple of pounds and gym subscriptions around here cost too much. So…”

“So… you’ve never gone running around here before?”

“Well, yes but only once.”

He nodded his head and scribbled something. I was starting to feel a bit daft at that point but once before certainly didn’t qualify as a usual occurrence.

“Did you see anything suspicious during today’s run?”

“No, but I was distracted. I had my earphones in and was trying to focus on my breathing.”

More like panting but no one needs to know.

“Okay. Well, here’s my card. If you remember anything – anything at all – give me a call.”

“Won’t you tell me to stay in town?”

“Damn TV.”

He said this with a smile which suggested that he wasn’t annoyed with them for giving up all his best tricks. It would have been enough to make me swoon if I wasn’t trying very hard to hide how shaken I was by the fact that earlier today, I had witnessed a murder.



There is not much I ask for in a woman but that she can cook, clean and give me strong children. That Lizzy, for all her beauty and brains, is practically useless to me.


Children? Obioma, you better be specific. We don’t know if angels are passing by.


Of course, children. What do you mean?


Sons first, then daughters. If not, you’ll end up like Mike with 6 daughters and counting.


And that is a bad thing?


Surely, you jest. What good is it to have children but not be able to teach them about engines and share your love for football with them? You raise them and then send them off to take care of some man and bear his children. A waste if you ask me.


Is there a law against teaching my daughters about engines and sharing my love for football with them?

Obioma chuckles

 You, my friend, are such a funny man.


It’s Your Loss

The pen is no man’s fool

Or so I have found

It does not grovel when you threaten to leave

It lets you go

Does not miss you

Does not call you and hang up when you pick up


The pen can survive without you

And maybe you can survive without it

But you had better not hint at being over the pen

Unless you’re sure you can live – regret free – without it.


I hope I can remember this every so often.

This African Tale


The tale
Of an African
Not to be cast aside

The emotion in the narrative
A tiny window
Into an ocean soul

A tale
Of wooly hair
Hidden, tortured to conform

A tale
Of child and a lantern
Enlightenment not impeded by darkness

A tale
Of million acres of land
Elephants stomp over the grassy expanse

A tale
Of colour
Not about colour

A tale
Of man, his odds
Everything in-between

A tale
Of ancestors and grudges
Bushes overgrown on the path of promise

A tale
Of strange beliefs
Fuelled by folklore

A tale
Of an artist’s masterpiece
Hidden in plain sight; yet unseen

A tale
Of chains and padlocks
Then men who dared dream

The tale
Of an African
Man and his fear of differences;

This tale took a turn
Long, long ago

This tale has endured
Still shakes off murky waters

This African tale
Remains unfinished


You only live once.


We all see this differently. For some, it means that they should live life to the fullest. They’re the ones who opt to go first when a new adventure is suggested. The ones who move out when their parents lay down ultimatums they can’t live with. The ones who have tried it all just for the hell of it. They know that life is short and that tomorrow is a game of chance so they go in head first. The live by any modified version of ‘Carpe diem’. They realise that others call them reckless and are aware that their ‘recklessness’ may very well be the end of them. No, I can’t conclude that they accept this fact fearlessly as not many people are fearless in the face of death. Despite being aware of the dangers of what they do, they reckon that it is worth it to have lived a life full of thrills. ‘We’ll all die anyway’.

Then, there are those who don’t subscribe to doing it all and seeing it all as quickly as possible. They rationalise that living a good, decent life and taking decisions carefully matters a lot. The unpredictability of their life span doesn’t hasten them. They take their time with life. They are usually the people who the majority get a kick out of convincing, even though they’re clearly winning without them. They like to savour the things they decide to do. They live in the moment and mostly don’t have the itch to try something new. They’d rather have three long satisfying moments than nine short ’speed-of-light’ ones.

On the other hand, they stay the longest on crappy jobs. ‘I don’t have any better job prospects so I’ll stick with this’. Mr. A (of the first group) is more likely to quit, go backpacking for a year and leisurely find a job during that period. Mr. B (second group) would frown at that suggestion and thinks job security is everything. Spontaneity is not Mr. B’s forte but he does secretly admire Mr. A’s boldness when he’s not commenting on the childishness of Mr A’s ways.

Said Mr. B to Mr. A

Said Mr. B to Mr. A

So, are you Mr A or Mr B? A disproportionate mix maybe?

It won’t hurt him

“It is really not what you think.”

“I just know it is.”

My husband and I are still in bed. It is a Saturday morning and our two children are sleeping in. This is our Saturday tradition. We, Mayowa and I, are having a suspicion induced conversation that many married people have at least once during their married life. The difference is that right now, as opposed to most cases, I’m the one on trial. Not directly though.

We’re talking about my work colleague, Mark. It doesn’t help matters that Mark and I do a lot of travelling together for work. Mayowa is clearly fuming now. He’s saying he caught Mark openly staring at me twice. The first time was when Mayowa came to see me at the office and the second time, we ran into Mark at a supermarket.

“I even gave him ‘the eye’ the second time and the son of a bitch raised his eyebrow at me. Can you believe that?”

I laugh a little but my mind is going a mile a minute. I have a very good memory. I remember things in details too. One of the reasons why I’m a very valuable employee and a mother that can’t be fooled easily. Now, I’m remembering Mayowa fondling me all of a sudden while we were buying groceries. I was meaning to ask him about that later but I forgot. I didn’t really mind at the time but it all made sense now.

“You’re just making stuff up. Nobody defies ‘the eye’.”

He is giving me a different kind of death stare now because he can tell that I’m making fun of him. I meant the second statement. The children don’t mess with the eye. That is why I’m the cool parent.

“Just don’t go anywhere alone with him, okay? I get that you have to work together but no late dinners at the office or when you travel on business. I know I may seem a little crazy now but just do that for me.”

“None of that, I promise.”

I follow that with a quick peck on his right cheek and struggle to continue with the book I’m reading.

The truth is Mark has made advances towards me. In fact, I’ve asked that he be sent on trips alone. My excuse is that my children need me and my husband is extremely busy. I made it clear that I’ll keep doing my part of the work Mark will take along. Our boss holds me in high esteem so my request was granted, much to my relief. I feel guilty for not telling Mayowa. Especially since he feels this way. At the same time I can’t help but love him more for his reaction. Women logic, I think.

I don’t want to tell him now because he’ll be mad that I didn’t before. I’ll be taking his advice. I guess what he doesn’t know won’t hurt him. Let’s just enjoy the weekend.



Dave Coba. Sony Photography Awards

They asked why we are no more

How could I let you go?

Said we were peas in a pod


How do I explain

That I cannot be loved

That at first our love was beauty

But like always I got tired of that beauty

And drained it

With insane jealousy


Lies and deceit


How do I explain

That me

With my mocha skin

Curvaceous body

And the face of an angel

Am not worthy of you

Or anyone

Hence, I abuse love


How do I explain

That I am damaged

Cannot be fixed

Or nurtured

And can only self-heal


So I say you cheated

I say I left you

Because you hurt me

My usual excuse


They always ask

I fear that they do know the answer

But refuse to believe


I’ll stick to my story

Because my truth isn’t pretty enough

The Versatile Blogger Award


It seems May is my month. But I Smile Anyway’s Ritu just nominated me for The Versatile Blogger Award. Thank you so much Ritu! Her blog is amazing. It has a range of cool stuff like funny things her pupils say in class, her highlights of motherhood and updates about her cat. You should head over there as soon as you’re done reading this.

The Versatile Blogger Award rules:
1. Thank the person who gave you this award. That’s common courtesy.
2. Include a link to their blog. That’s also common courtesy — if you can figure out how to do it.
3. Next, select blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
4. Nominate those bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link back to the post on your site announcing their nomination.
5. Finally, tell the person who nominated you, seven facts about you

I had to think for  while to get my 7 facts. Here they are:

1. I have mood swings sometimes. I can go from 0 to 100 real quick but it is never without reason. Movies tend to make me happy. As such, I have selected The Chef as my special happy movie for when someone pisses me off or I’m just not feeling too good.

2. I have a quiet love for t-shirts. Right now, I have a sorry collection but that’ll change sometime soon. I’m a sucker for graphic tees especially and anyone who rocks ’em.

3. I have very good self-control. I’m purposely slow to react most times because I don’t like to do rash things. Its awesome to be in control of myself and not go off at the slightest provocation.

4. I’m an outgoing introvert. That basically means that I can switch up depending on the situation. Many people who don’t know me well might easily conclude that I’m not an extrovert because I can talk up a storm, easily. As far as the other participant(s) in the conversation is/are as invested as I am and I am comfortable. I’d much rather stay indoors anyday.

5. I’m vertically challenged and proud of it! There’s occasional short people banter on Twitter and I just find it funny. I’m about 5’3 and very comfortable with it. This may have something to do with the fact that I don’t go out much and as a result, don’t meet tons of tall people.

6. I enjoy friendship without everyday communication. I like rich e-conversations and interesting phone calls that last an hour and some. That can’t be as nice if we talk everyday, in my opinion. So, I like spaced out correspondence. I also don’t mind not knowing every little thing about my friend. We all have our private stuff and I respect that.

7. I may get down once in a while but I’m positivity! I never quit looking on the bright side of things. In a world where many things are out to get us, positivity is important. We’re built to last, baby 😉

My nominees are:

Stumbling For Balance


For The Soul

Outside The Coffee Cup

No Plain Janie

Suburban Hobo

Please don’t feel obliged to accept. If you do, let me know, so I can read your facts too!

We Are


I grew up in a pool house
Far away from here

My mother
The maid of the main house
Kept our home spotless
My room always ‘cleaned up’
Me, always furious
Because I liked my junk

Why do we always have to clean?
Why can’t I put posters up?
My teenage self
Mouth full of questions

My friends would ask
Why is your brother dark?
I lied
Said I did not know

How do I explain that my mother was jilted twice?
First by a black man
Her first act of rebellion
Against her snobby white parents
The result, Jamal
We all call him Jay

The Father-Daughter dance
Jay went with me
People whispered
Snickered as we danced past
With head held high, he paid no attention

His father’s gift to him
I suppose
Our mother is no brave woman

Make no mistake
She has her virtues
Her hard-work
Her unconditional love
Her efforts to give us the best

She’s proud now
Of what Jay and I have become
The best gifts she gave
Constant reminder that we are not our fathers
That we could muddle through tough times
That we are who we choose to be
And we are.