Last week i did not go to church. I was about to. But i heard there were riots. A child had been found dead. Split apart limb from limb. She was found outside a church, her head first then the rest of her. The worshippers were singing inside. I do not know if they knew what had happened but as their singing rose so did the anger outside. The church was almost burnt down. Some say one of its members sacrificed the little one in exchange for wealth. And leave the corpse right outside pointing to where he was? I don’t know. It is what was said. It was a day of rest, of family.
This morning i walked to work. Everything was the same except there was a small crowd as i took the first turn past the chicken house. A young man, one of the students at the university, had found two abandoned toddlers. He had an early class and a test later so he had planned to head to school early but got concerned when he saw the two alone, in the morning cold with no one in sight. The oldest can’t even speak much yet. All he kept saying was ‘mama’. They were left behind, we don’t know by whom. My heart pains. It is today we mark the Day of the African Child.
I got to work and heard there had been an incident. The death toll was still rising. An attack at the coast. Terrorists some said. My friend is there. She cannot believe what she sees. Too much death, too much despair. Lanes are fiery. It is not right, this state of affairs. Comments from the big people at this time are too little. Too late. 48 were confirmed dead last i checked. The victims were mostly men. Yesterday was Father’s Day.
It is not that there is no good in this land. There is plenty of light. Yet still, too thick a darkness. This is my time. I pray that yours will not be the same yet afraid that that same prayer may cause it to be worse.
Justice, our shield and defender. Did someone lose it and did not speak? They wished us to stand firm and defend, but first we would need solid ground where there are not tremors, but quakes. And they are getting stronger. I do not know how many are still standing. I do not know.
“They will face the full force of the law…Security has been beefed”. I have been robbed twice in my own home. I am no longer sure what these mean. I am afraid of what is becoming.
Nnwa, I am afraid. How will you play and run around the neighbourhood if there are those that wait to crush and trade you for gains only they understand? How will you get home from school? Will school be safe enough? What about church Nnwa, what about home? I am afraid that even if i will stalk you, i will not be enough to keep you safe. Afraid of how the tides are changing.
Storms are brewing, I see clouds in the distance. The distance that may be your present. Only God will keep you Nnwa. Me, i can’t. I will try. And i will fail.
© Ang’asa Malowa