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Posted in fiction, love

INTO THE DEEP END

It was exactly twenty years ago. We were five years old, Jill. I remember how our parents celebrated our birthdays with so much love and planted kisses all over our faces – how you used to fake tears just to have more chocolates than me left me amazed; it made me hate you for seconds but love you a mile after your wide smile lit up my smirk. We were like the perfect twins from different families – or maybe that was what our parents thought since we were born the same day. You loved coming around to spend weekends with my family and I, and we always had a reason to hold hands laughing over the oversized pants of a cartoon character or crying deeply when a young child in the movie wept about troubles I do not know now. No, I did not cry; I was like the man in small pants pulling back your long hair albeit gently and attempting soothing cheer-you-up words whenever you had reason to be dismayed.  Age five was one year I can never forget in a hurry. More to the chocolates even, was your love for music – you had me learn by rote, the whole songs used in SOUND OF MUSIC. There was something about you that transcended your purty face, lissom form, and grey eyes; you were the wunderkind I grew to envy.

Jilly Jean, as you had called yourself when we advanced into grade seven. You were only ten years old but almost knew more than our math teacher. I recall how you solved every word problem in our Math texts and sustained that blimp smile when you deliberately missed one but got applauded by the inundated math teacher for that particular one. You were like the genius while I was a fighter of the bananas of our class – but what did you care? I was still your favourite – you may have found me clownish those years of throwing repartees beyond my small brains, and laughing so hard at my stutters. It was hurtful to have been born a dime a dozen, but I learnt to be your number one admirer, supporter, and family during secondary school.

Our first kiss; I remember we were concluding WAEC. If I did the math correctly, we were sixteen years. You remained slim and graceful, you were few inches taller than me – I cannot forget how you kept singing that song in the top floor. I still craze at how you fought Daniella for calling me a tout – I could not separate you from brandishing her cheeks with future-resetting slaps clairvoyants never envisaged. We got home that very day but my eyes watched you weep at what you called “undeserved boil over”. All my attempts to make you stop the tears did not work until I inadvertently sat on the tuffet very close to your revealing thighs, with my right palm carelessly chilling on the spotless tan skin your thigh boasted of. Your sobbing reduced, and your maintained gaze at my hand sent me the cues that I was becoming well-intentioned. The difficulty in removing my palm had me a bit restive, and my act of contrition afterwards threw you into a barrel of laughs. “Jack, what are you afraid of?” You had this gutsy and you clearly had matured in thoughts and motives than my feeble and fearful innocuous proclivities. Those words had challenged me but the whole tension when our faces sought a fusion had my throat dry and heartbeat ceded to my stomach. We kissed that evening. Our tongues became yea-sayers to what our souls whispered but maybe we became randy and fleshy as I beckoned with no staid manners that you take off your civvies so I could grope at your breasts, and taste of your papilla. Our first kiss could have been our first diddle as I strayed into the lonely paths of your body and tickled my thoughts at your willing demons; but you did not budge, you showed you were wiser.

August 2014, I remember the month; you had squeezed a keepsake into my hands. I asked you if that were supposed to serve as a sop as I never since graduation, kissed those thin lips any longer. I wondered why I was supposed to keep your pink lingerie as a reminder of you as you readied for a trip to Ukraine to pursue your career in the medical field. But you knew, Jill. You knew that you were going to tip me a million times embarking on such sojourn. Why were you selfish to have chosen to unite your soul with ghosts on that flight? Now my world remains bleached dust of my red tears, I have become an object of do overs from life’s twist; I have graduated from quad to overindulgence in heavy grog till I behold a view of you giving me those broad smiles and singing the right euphony whilst in the radiance of Heaven. I hope I forgive you for taking the solo route to the land of no return, even as I seethe the flesh of a bullock to celebrate your entrance into the sinless nation smelling of goodness and majesty. 

I will write to you often. Amidst my crapulence is still a bloke with rue at your departure, and deep love for you. Weep not from high up there that I write poems and leave them at your cenotaph as occupation; I have come to understand that the strong wine will be a pang till I am gone in a trice to meet you at the other side. Until then, Jill, I will be a habitué of this carved headstone no matter how frail my legs become; this is my article of faith till I am a part of this world no more.
OKOCHA OBED

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Posted in poetry

FRIENDS

More often than not have I heard,

so cliché a phrase – “alone we all came”.

A phrase that seeks to justify

so bizarre a claim, yet widely acclaimed

that you need not other men to thrive.

Yet have I not seen any mortal ship safely arrive,

without the significant input of an external drive.

I’ve seen nations rise and fall,

kings installed and dethroned,

horizons broadened and narrowed

lives being made and marred.

And all had but one ingredient in common,

the radical input of another.

Yet seek I to illuminate,

the agents of the positives,

Friends – as they are called.

They surface quietly, yet operate valiantly;

your success their noble desire.

Immensely loyal they are,

but at your every fault they frown;

A better you – their crown.

They scold like a father and show care like a mother.

They cling to you all through your journey,

Yes! – Your sojourn through the furnace.

Rarely are they seen,

Scarcely are they kept.

But to one who finds them,

More precious than rubies are they.

They help through every of life’s daunting malady,

to reinstate your joyful and peaceful harmony.

Their voice echoes hope,

their presence a powerful catalyst.

None can do without them,

not even the most independent of all – certainly not.


Have you identified yours?

Have you appreciated yours?

Do you cherish their presence?

Do you acknowledge their relevance?

And finally, are you a friend you’d want to keep?


This is dedicated to all my friends:

Past or present, just entered, currently present or already exited,

that have helped shape my life and mould my mind.

Though sometimes it may not look like it,

But you are greatly valued!


Samuel Idowu Boroh

Posted in law

LEGAL SKETCHES ON CRIMINAL DEFAMATION

“The public is increasingly disgusted with a steady diet of defamation, and prepared to reward those who refrain from it.” – MITCH DANIELS

INTRODUCTION

The law of defamation is one thoroughly handled under civil law, particularly tort law. It is under tort law, defined as injury to the reputation of the person resulting from words written or spoken carrying false contents and published to the ears or eyes of a third person; the intent to mislead a third party is not of relevance but sufficient enough that upon the facts, a reasonable man was likely to be swayed by the defamatory statement prima facie thus a heightened likelihood of holding a negative view about the person defamed. This writer, however, is not unaware of the fact that the abusive words or insults uttered as prelude to a fight may be considered as words not to be taken seriously after considering the status of the parties, and the circumstances that led to the bitter words. To be mentioned pronto is the fact that words written are called libellous acts and it goes as far as covering media publications or print outs. The defamatory statements by word of mouth, is called slander. Since it has been a brief discourse on tort law, it is safe to add that damages is the relief sought generally for this tort – whilst it is actionable per se (without proof of injury) for libel, slander could prove difficult as the claimant in establishing the basic ingredients of the tort must be able to plead and capture the exact words or gestures complained of, and must be able to lead evidence establishing same. The claimant must be able to prove the injury, generally, if the thirst to rope in the defamer lingers in the taste bud. It is expedient at this juncture to stress that the claimant leads evidence in verbatim which proffer not the substance but the actual defamatory words so used as this goes a mile in assisting the bench determine whether indeed those words in their ordinary and natural meaning (or other ways applied), will pass for defamation: AKIN OLAIFA V GABRIEL ADEDEJI AINA; CHIEF S.O.N. OKAFOR V D.O. IKEANYI – the import of this being that the court will not lend its hands to a claimant who hurls “hearsay evidence” to the courtroom seeking redress neither will the court cherish the testimony of a witness who robustly testifies what he heard from a passer-by because the claim will not be based on third party testimony who was not present when the slanderous words were uttered. A notable case is EMMANUEL BEKEE & ORS V FRIDAY EBOM BEKEE.

The arrival that slander is not actionable per se will tip the moment we consider the exceptions to the general rule. In instances where there is imputation of crime on the claimant, or imputation of a venereal disease, or imputation of unchastity, or imputation affecting business reputation; then there will be little need to further prove the injury as these are actionable in itself with damages duly assumed: EGBE V ADEFARASIN; OLANIYI V ELERO. There are defences to this tort but since the focus is chiefly on criminal defamation, it may be convenient a time to dwell on it – the defences to defamation under criminal law are similar in subject matter with that under civil law just that punishment with the option of bail is readily the comeuppance in the former, while it is for the latter, damages. Also, a criminal suit is come about because of the supposed inclination of such defamatory words to arouse passion, provocation, and revenge thus affecting the public peace the law strives to maintain.

WHAT IS CRIMINAL DEFAMATION?

The term criminal defamation is defined in s.373 (1) of the criminal code. To regurgitate its wordings, “defamatory matter is matter likely to injure the reputation of any person by exposing him to hatred, contempt, or ridicule, or likely to damage any person in his profession or trade by an injury to his reputation.” Subsection 2 has that: “such matter may be expressed in spoken words or any audible sounds, or in words legibly marked on any substance whatever, or by any sign or object signifying such matter otherwise than by words and may be expressed either directly or by insinuation or irony.” What will be agreed upon having read the section, is that the law is not concerned with the degree of hurt the defamed bears rather it is concerned with the likelihood of such defamation to have reduced the defamed subjecting him to hatred, contempt, or ridicule. Put it aptly, where the alleged defamatory matter does not go to show exposure to hatred, contempt, or ridicule, then there is no culpability. A typical scenario is where Mr A makes false statements about Mr C to the hearing of a group of people that Mr C’s wife goes about in different cars a product of which was owed to her libidinousness, then the offence becomes complete if such unfriendly remark was one enough to reduce Mr C’s household to ridicule and hate. The part that has to do with innuendos and ironies was seen supra in the succinct x-ray of defamation under tort law. If the defamatory words are done in means other than directly, then it will remain a case of defamation after weighing the facts and finding the nebulous comments to be ironic and laced with impropriety all in a bid to say false things about the defamed – it is the view of this writer that in 9/10 cases, innuendos may be intended false statements as the defamer seems to ever pass his message in a way that he could claim naivety as to his intent or innocuousness as to his speech. On innuendos, the case of Arayi v. Ojubu is key. In this case, A made an oral statement to a village audience to the effect that the Olu of Warri had ordered each person to pay five pounds flat rate tax and seven pounds each for the Western Region free compulsory primary education scheme. The magistrate found that the Olu of Warri had said nothing of the kind and that the words were defamatory. On appeal however the High Court held that the words spoken were, without an innuendo, not defamatory of the Olu for they could not reasonably be said to expose him to hatred, ridicule, or contempt. – this case, clearly not direct on point, also flows to the shore of the legal position that merely to publish of another that he owes money is not defamatory though if an inability to repay is implied it becomes defamatory (the position in R V. COGHLAN). 

A close look at s.373 (1) cc evinces that where the defamatory matter is likely to damage the defamer in his occupation or trade then there is an offence. This ordinarily means that he has a reputation to so protect that such imputation on his business reputation will affect his earnings and many other wrongs. It is to be agreed with Akintunde Esan that reputation of such a person defamed should not be doggedly taken or implied to mean a white life without a string of imperfections but this writer stresses here that such a reputation which suffered such imputation may not know justice if indeed his nature of job includes illegal trades and transactions. It is apposite to consider the last two subsections under this section.

SECTION 373(3) & (4) OF THE CRIMINAL CODE

Under criminal law, where the defamer is seen to have defamed a dead man, there may be no crime. This should be taken with due caution and open-mindedness as the writer is not unaware of the fact that s.373 (3) cc posits in blank prints: it is immaterial whether at the time of the publication of the defamatory matter, the person concerning whom such matter is living or dead. What must be gleaned from all, under this subhead, is that merely to defame a dead man, may be no crime and the logic being that if it were to be a crime, the conduct of the deceased will never be brought into question and it would ever prove a difficulty to write history. What this sub-section seems to cure remains the object of the ridiculing little wonder the use of it is immaterial; but for the dead it is usually a question of who becomes the object subjected to a likelihood of hatred, contempt, and ridicule. It is submitted therefore that where a publication concerning a dead man goes to affect his relatives in such a way as to bring them to contempt and ridiculing, there is an offence. It is an offence where the defamatory words are targeted at the siblings or household of any deceased individual with a view to bring them to hatred. 

With a close look at s.373 (1), (2), and even (3) cc; it appears that there is no need to prove before the judges, the intention of the accused to bring upon the defamed any shrinking reputation or otherwise – thus a similarity between that dwelt under civil law which dwells on the facts and circumstances of the alleged defamatory remark. But it is wise to give s.373 (3) cc a deeper look. It is not enough for the relatives of a dead person to cry about the hurtful words or the innuendos used by the accused and expect the judge to sentence the accused; rather, the relatives are to prove the intent of the defamer to injure them: R V. ENSOR. From the ratiocination of Prof. Okonkwo, it will appear that the proof of such intention becomes key to make the court see beyond the facts that the words were to the dead and no more, but are defamatory statements with a view to bringing the relatives to contempt, hatred, and ridicule. Reading the case of R V. LABOR, it should be understood that it must be proved by the prosecution that there was a living member of the family of the deceased whose reputation may have been injured by the publication.
The law is clear on the matter. Criminal defamation as we have been made to understand recognises the axiom that dead men have no rights nor suffer any wrongs; it also recognises the fact that in cases of this nature vide s.373 (3), the law is interested in the proclivities of defamatory statements made about a dead man capable of bringing to smudge the reputation of family members – it is the living alone that are subject to legal protection. Of needed addition is the terse legal confirmation that it is very material for the consent of the Attorney-General of the Federation to have been sought before prosecution of defamatory matters concerning a dead person is given flesh and blood in a court of law. This is the whole gist in s.373 (4) cc. 

PUBLICATION OF DEFAMATORY STATEMENTS

There is no mention of the word, “libel” or “slander” in the criminal code but a cursory look at relevant sections of the Code vide the definition section treated supra and even s.374(1) (a) & (b) cc, will show that the description attached in these provisions have same bearing with the branches of defamation treated under tort law supra. It has already been said what constitutes defamation in s.373 (2) cc – it goes to cover that of spoken words or audible sounds, and that of written remarks or anything otherwise than by words. From the definition section, the criminal code recognises slander and libel as branches of defamation from its wordings; and like defamation under tort law, criminal defamation must be published. Looking at s.374 (1) (a), for the purposes of this Code the publication of defamatory matter is in the case of spoken words or audible sounds, the speaking of such words or the making of such sounds in the hearing of the person defamed or any other person. Agreed, the publication will be complete upon the utterances of the defamatory words to either the hearing of the defamed or to some person other than the defamed. Where the audible sounds are recorded and are defamatory, it shall be deemed to be published if reproduced in any place to the hearing of the persons other than the person causing it to be reproduced. This is the law under s.374 (2) cc; the examples of such matter include tape, disc, and the remaining means mentioned in subsection 3 of this section. 

The proviso that centres on libellous acts is s.374 (1) (b) cc. It has that in other cases, the exhibiting it in public, or causing it to be read or seen, or showing or delivering it, or causing it to be shown or delivered, with intent that it may be read or seen by the person defamed or by any other person. It is transparent from this subsection that the defamatory statements will be deemed published from a mere exhibition of its content in the public with intent that it be read or seen. Both subsections end with the inclusion that the defamation is deemed published if heard by the person defamed or a third party. It is the part that allows for completion of the offence if heard by the defamed person alone, that shows the disparity between tort and the law of crime on this subject matter – it should not be forgotten that under tort, the publication must take place but completed upon communication to a person other than the plaintiff; for criminal defamation, an offence is deemed sufficient if uttered to the defamed and no more. It is the view of this writer, however, that s.374 (1) & (2) cc may suffer infeasibility for the singular fact that in cases of spoken words of defamatory matter, it may become impossible to prove the crime as there was no witness to make the prosecution’s case positive. How can words told to the hearing of the defamed only, amount to defamation? If the intention of the draftsmen in s.373 in its natural meaning is about determining whether the defamatory words were of high likelihood to bring hatred, contempt, or ridiculing to the defamed, then how is it feasible for the defamed to prove that beyond the emotional weeps he suffered after hearing the slurs, the words he heard alone were bound or most probably exposing him to contempt or hatred? It needs be reiterated here that the court is more interested in protecting the reputation of the defamed on this matter – one should be deemed defamed when exposed to hatred; or the tendency of its publication to attract some regrettable injury, stays high.

DEFENCES TO CRIMINAL DEFAMATION

The defences under here have large similarity with that under tort law. Just as truth of a statement is a justification under defamation in tort law, s.377 cc embraces such as a reliable defence.  There is yet another defence known as absolute privileges vide s.378 of the Code. Under this section, the president or governor is considered privileged upon publication of the defamatory matter. It should be understood that immunity covers these public officers vide s.308 of the extant constitution of Nigeria. The question as to whether the president can be sued for criminal defamation is one that must be answered positively where it is evinced that he stands as a nominal person – nominal party meaning one who does not have a personal interest but his interest in any particular case is by virtue of his office. The idea to be taken therefore is that there lies no criminal responsibility on the president hence it will be futile a course to aim for the big bone (a conviction): HASSAN V. ATANYI.

Say we settle here for a while, it is the law that no civil or criminal proceedings shall be instituted or continued against the public officers mentioned in subsection 3 of s.308 during his period in office: RAFIU LAWAL V. THE STATE (1981). A full read of s.308 CFRN will show that while the constitution puts shackles on the legal foot of a party to continue a suit that was pending before such a public officer came to know immunity, it seems rather silent as to whether the public officer that is now immune should as well be debarred from bringing suits to court in his personal capacity. But whether it becomes safe to hold that the public officers are debarred may suffer far-reaching intention of the draftsmen as it so soothes logic and no-brainer puzzles to hold affirmatively that the nearest in meaning of s.308 (2) CFRN, which estops parties other than the public officers from suing public officers in unofficial matters, is for the public officers to so institute actions civil in nature as it is common knowledge that criminal matters are state affairs. This is as good as it gets because relying on the lead judgement given by Onnoghen JSC in the case of Global Excellence Communications Ltd v. Mr Donald Duke, and joining my legal credo with Ayoola JSC in the celebrated case of Tinubu v. IMB Securities PLC. In these cases, the twelve tablets of interpretation were used in shedding light to a rather bright area (s.308) – the twelve tablets were given by Obaseki JSC in the case of AG BENDEL V. AG FEDERATION. In the Donald Duke’s case, judgement was entered for him after the due appropriation of opposing learned counsel’s argument which was flowery and laced with undiluted items of morality and no more. If indeed the draftsmen intended to debar the public officers, it should have done so during its construction. The mere fact that one might choose to call it narrow does not in any way change the law and the expectation that the court make fanciful abracadabra on matters within the jurisdiction of the legislature will amount to usurpation of power and clear neglect for the constitution it so seeks to protect by due interpretation – as Obaseki JSC put it in Ojokolobo V Alamu, “…if the language is clear and explicit, the court must give effect to it, for in that case, the words of the statute speak the intention of the legislature. Its function is jus dicere not jus dare. The words of a statute must not be overruled by a statute.” Of disturbing concern was the submission of Justice Abubakar Talba in a case situate at Abuja that late President Yar’Adua was debarred from instituting a legal action on a defamatory matter published by Leadership Newspaper surrounding his health status. It seems smooth sail if we consider Global Excellence Communications Ltd v. Mr Donald Duke (supra). Here a preliminary objection was made by the defendants that the governor is debarred from suing while in office in his personal capacity. While the governor succeeded at the trial court, the appeal was allowed in the Court of Appeal only to be reduced to dust at the supreme court level that the governor had such right to so sue; it was added by the court that it was not for the court to read in between the clear lines of s.308 and choose to smuggle laws that be not intended by the draftsmen. That we suffer our minds to matter purely concentrated on criminal defamation, it is apposite we segue into a conditional privilege.

A good read on s.378 cc will show that it is absolutely privileged to give testimony in a court of law though it is misleading on the surface. Defamation claim must fail here as the court expects that witnesses be free to express themselves without fear of imminent law suits over one false statement too many. In Liley v. Roney, a complaint to the law society or its equivalent had been held to be absolute privilege (this is found in s.378 (2)). There may be little need to dwell on the defence of conditional privilege but it must be stated as a matter of guide for law finders that the apropos section touching on this defence remains in s.379 cc.

Where the defamatory matter is published in a periodical, like tort law the alleged defamer is expected to rebut the presumption of knowledge by leading evidence to show lack of knowledge of such publication as well as lack of negligence if indeed the criminal responsibility be absolved. This is the undiluted message in s.380 (2) cc. There are other defences under the code like that of protection of innocent sellers of books and newspapers (381 cc), fair comments, to mention to this point.

PENAL SECTION FOR CRIMINAL DEFAMATION

Subject to what has been said in s.380, s.381 of the Code, and letters under fair comments et al, it should be taken broadly that any person who publishes any defamatory matter is guilty of a misdemeanour and is liable to imprisonment for a year, and any person who publishes such defamatory matter knowing it to be false is liable to imprisonment for two years. S.375 cc is the relevant section that establishes what has just been said. There is no complexity in this proviso. It is the law that where the prosecution is unable to prove intent, then the accused will not escape the lesser conviction i.e. the one year jail term: S.179 (1), CPA.

Where it becomes a felonious act is when the defamer publishes or threatens to publish the defamatory matter, or promises not to proceed in its publication, or offers mischievously to prevent its publication with the intent to extort money or any other material from the victim; or to procure, attempt to procure for any person and from any person anything of whatever kind which clearly suggests an undue advantage, is punishable under the criminal code vide s.376 with imprisonment for seven years.
CONCLUSION

In leading evidence in an indictment for publication of defamatory libel, where the accused pleads not guilty he may show that such a publication was not defamatory in content, or that it was not published by him, or it was a fair comment and no more, or that it was absolutely privileged. Examining s.6 of the Libel Act, 1843, the accused cannot on such a plea seek to prove the truth of the matter unless, of course, he is charged with publishing the matter knowing it to be false. Justification, if and when pleaded, must be in line with s.6 Libel Act (supra). There is more to this subject-matter, but the above should be able to keep one abreast with the basics and little conflicts known or yet known in the legal community.

©Authored by OKOCHA Obed.

Posted in poetry

THE ROAD

There was always that first poem. How was your first shot at poetry? Well here is mine😁….

Nonplussed, befuddled, not able to demystify
The agonies of life that compels a man to cry
Blood sucking Demons on the earth and up the sky
Endless killing in place like a blow right in the eye
The trembling —
A story of a young girl in her prime
Innocuous, innocent, she is tagged a flower girl
Given to firm beliefs that she can’t die before her time
Bonzer! That was when her problems start’d to swell
The road —
False evidence against reality, fear
8 o’clock news purging forth bad news in the ear
She is scared of the horror, against her own belief
A visual field of demise was formed in her heart, now conceived

O thou Evil, how impenitent you are
Always seeking to devour any bright and morning star
With its expertise and caprices, it gets down every car
The story of the young girl was, for death, a new chapter
The trip —
She relinquished her fears and thought to pray
Casting and binding her fears, the one and only Abaddon
The Demon stood with friends whilst awaiting his prey
She embarked on her journey – could this be called Armageddon
The midpoint —
The whole essence was Benin to PH
She awoke from her slumber, she was in Imo, touché!
Feeling happy, to herself she began to sing
It happened! Alas!! A dog was on the road and the
driver had to swing.

Tragic! All efforts of the driver was invalid
The bus did several stunts, it was worse than the movie Matrix
Nobody could shout God for it seemed now very torrid
She still believed her God won’t act in a manner rather torpid
The encounter —
Two tires scurried away with great meteor
Just as expected the bus was spinning upside down
Laughing vacantly, Abaddon felt gladdened to destroy
Abigael managed to stand with no bruises up to down
Such ignominy —
The plans of the evil ones had failed
Her star was not a meal,deux ex machina prevailed
Only her survived, I would not say she was fortuitous
God’s glory evinced, even THE ROAD was not contentious.

OKOCHA OBED.

Posted in poetry

AKRASIA

Gifted hands at sketching nudities since two

Mama’s proscription of demonic possessions scared you

The sun shone at your star and it was true

But you were too busy not breaking mama’s rule

Look at you!

The genius of Michelangelo was in your ink, as your tool

Too scared were you to break away from mama’s fallacious credo

You disappoint, you disappoint.


Many maybe every never stopped coitus with perversion

It is preferable to hide this truth with verbosity

But we weak

We just never take the prescription

Give the lad the letter, he nuzzles only the aesthetics

Take the truth to the hearers, they giggle at your diction and pronunciation

Take it to the gentiles, they say preach if they perceive no animosity

But all along they knew the message, just adored their akrasia

Somebody was not ready for the price 

Someone was not keen on nursing ambitions

You disappoint, you disappoint.


And when the time comes, you will know

It will be like thick smudge without rags to wipe

The time for you will come when your mornings meet the night

Then you would wish there was more to tapping your foot on the earth

Where your bright ideas mourn your weak flesh

When you are compelled by regrets to count your fallen stars

The birds of the air will assist your laments with dirges

You wake up into the best advices at grey hairs too late

The absurdities

Your weeping is then grouped with banal anonymity

But you knew you had a passion for drawing

But you refused to take the risk of further discoveries

But no buts.


And if it is fair to learn from a man’s regret

Will it be fair to be the man with such regrets?

Oh! Your choice

Pregnant with resources don’t guarantee a safe delivery of potentials

Too much passion without a thorough mental is a miscarriage

No ambition with abundant wits is murder

Akrasia is abstact noun,

Its reality is in a man’s indecisions

Its spark is in omissions of common knowledge

Its being is the weakness many never wrestle

But it is okay to grow slowly

It shows you love the message not the messenger


Maybe we are artists finding inks as duties

Like the boy, we sketching our purpose from its nudities

Unlike the boy, we sketch it with garments with a step into uncertainties

In our hands lie the ink and paper to write our stories

We are the means

Our silence is the weakness of will in the end

It is not enough to tell oneself that mediocrity is a concern

What you did not do about it makes you history

You disappoint, you disappoint.


OKOCHA OBED


 

Posted in Uncategorized

FOR SOME REASON(S)

Once again I grip my pen to write something to my community. But my thoughts are jumpy; I am pregnant with the voice of disqualification to send the message. I ran close to the rocks to question the sudden feeling of incapacitation somewhere in between my tongue and my chest but for some reason the rocks were mute. I am Black – for some reason I learnt this by rote till my subconscious dined in graceful relaxation at the sight of coal skins I saw on Google. Without exactitude as to subject matter of this letter, I place my holy book close to my thigh that my eager fingers mislead not my community to a web of confusion – could be a sanctimonious move, source of inspiration, or self-deceit, but the intent is all that matters. So with unnecessary iteration, I verbalize that the colour of my skin is Black and my ink floats to staining point on my manchii, black men with every black issue, community, squeaky clean black apples I enjoy when left in vagueness – each mention in no particular order. So after six nightmares in one night, I am led by my flight hormone to state unreservedly that I am not qualified because I suffer what we all suffer. Be it from the throne of hypocrisy to slimy lies; from the black confusion to fury fist fights; from believable activism to underground nepotism; from the ironies of October first’s significance, to over 700 million US dollars dependence and shit! Someone has to write, someone has to accommodate the stones of hypocrisy if a change in today’s reality is to be swallowed by the perfect ideology of the black slaves. It is raining hard here that I cannot here my thoughts but I am not sorry all the same if my message has a drum full of maze and hyperbole that dribbles you to frustration or if its truism leaves you unrepentantly disgruntled.

At the mention of the word TRUTH, what comes to mind is the problem as it is… inasmuch as solace should not be given to that interpretation, it may be pardoned because the black issues have oiled the solutions to dusk. For some reason, there is the need to stop the clamour for racial bonding because if we moonwalk back to Obama’s campaign, the black community was keen on voting because Obama was a black man who had a torch of ancient narration mirroring the travails of an average black man. The controversial theories and emotional outbursts of black Americans did not leave the niche of the white government is interested in none of our interests – some placards carried by the blacks displayed Obama’s image but the holders of the placard were too excited that they thought it arrogant to do a dig up on intellectual Obama. But what is the point? The year 2012 was a trying time for the erstwhile president of the United States and the Blacks lost hope and tiptoed to the realm of a niggotry raging syndrome – the remark despite his start-but-not-finish projects that he was confident to win again if there was a slot for a third try, was a grotesque and creepy moment that scared the shit out of some black men in Connecticut and typical black villages. So if history holds that the level of nepotism in the white race was at a GP tank level, Wiki should be quickly updated to include the black man fought the good fight to out rank the US in nepotism slot. Nepotism is just favouritism – it is a contagious virus that seems right in the eye of the practitioner as it has a mellifluous way of pummelling the gifted hands and accepting the inept fingers of persons knitted by consanguinity or affinity, tribe, or sex. If we want to be seen by the world to have a favouritism-free outlook, then we must start seeing every tribe beyond a stereotype – it is achievable to my mind, I understand your giggle. 

The Eastern part of Nigeria has been the gist on Facebook – the diatribe on social media all geared towards a call for secession. The seventh verse of the third chapter of the book of Proverbs frowns at the appalling folly of the leadership of the corruption activist, and the London-based Easterner on a mission to presenting a mirage to the amygdala of his minions. If the allegations stand as a matter of truth that IPOB have for themselves a garrison with sophisticated cannons, then I have saved for myself a black robe to mourn the washed brains of people who think the miracle of war in arms and the man and david and goliath is attainable course meal any time soon. For some reason the youths who never saw or participated in the civil war of 1967 are finger happy airing their voices via messages on the media – the internet has become the voice of the voiceless – on why a split is fair and apropos. But who is asking the question whether Kanu intends to rule as a democrat if there becomes a country? For some reason the youths have stopped thinking – if at 57 years Nigeria is still accused by our internal recess of decaying at infancy, how feasible is the expected happiness of these justifiably emotionally bruised homogenous indigenous peoples whose homogeneity over time never spoke with one voice? Have they imagined their one year old? By necessary implication, the agitation seems to be politically inspired and clothed with a people pleasing rubric called MARGINALISATION. And maybe for some reason the Easterners feel they should have a shot at presidency hence the ruckus for a break up, but the constitution seems fairly penned on election matters without the motive of hurting the feelings of the finger-counts Eastern state. If the first man of Nigeria had masturbated wisdom into his inner cockles, the python dance should have never known reality – to err is human after all, but continuous folly is the configuration of a man into a bleating sheep. Bullying the people in the East violated their fundamental human rights and to show why there is difficulty at a settlement, the South Eastern Governors are cold porridges and meteorically wiping their hands off the agitation to safeguard their level of belligerence to the man that wielded political muscle – for this reason, it is comprehensible why one should barf at the obtuseness of these Governors (and yes…with all due respect). The restructuring agenda and enhanced peace talks is the banal solution to the sensitive conflicts, but the Government needs to understand this trite solution line rather than bask in further bugs like proscription of agitating group to be a term still suffering due definition. For some reason we have been wise in our own eyes, it is for this we ever retrograde and behave like cannibals with little regard for human life. But then, do you not disagree with me?

I read Clinton’s article on the young people’s bill and for some reason I took sides with Destiny’s comment that the youths are not ready for leadership. If it is not a manuscript carrying the heading of a suggestive erotic manifestation, or the gossip news of whose nip slip did not escape the flash of a tech camera; then carriers’ of solution tips to salvage the economy are called mere preachers – for some reason it is inductive, but maybe it can be understood an angle as history chose to preserve the past activism of the Dino’s to the present extravagant credo of same personality. But just look inwards and see how tawny and morally depraved we have become. Will I not be a bloody hypocrite to petition Google to have the porn sites ensure that no free sexual performances be on display? But we know the reason for our depravity is because we have worshipped the feet of idleness. For some reason it should not be misunderstood that I now take to calling the black youths porn addict; the point made is that there are lot of ways we can add value to our society rather than dwell in yucky creamy spill overs for personal aggrandisement or its equivalent. I see a youth with the vision to reforming barren laws like the unsavoury wordings of the code on defilement which allows for two months for the offence to know the court record books or no more. There is a lot of impact if for some reason we realise that we need to rise above hypocrisy and blame games – we should not wail and depend on the unborn babies with magical wands to cause a change. 

For some reason we need to tell one another that self-centredness is the way to perish. The entire favouritism and power tussle is all in a bid to enrich oneself. For some reason my paragraphs are like excerpts of three different texts reflecting the need to be less hypocritical, united, and vision-driven. But what do I know? If for some reason you managed to read to this point, please join celebrate the wisest man and father of this scatterbrain-a-writer. For some reason God has kept you pops…. THE VOICE is lucky to have known what Earth looks like through you. Love you!

OKOCHA OBED

Posted in love, poetry

IF YOU MUST GO

And if it is a must
Dust your pants when you pull yourself up

Frown a little; frown because it took so long

Then squeeze a smile.

Squeeze it till your face’s content is beam

Look afar with less regrets.

Think of you after you’ve healed

Heal – 

But can you?


And if you must go

Have a hope that despite failed attempts

You fought the good fight.

Smile – 

But can you?

She is not in love.

No! She is; she loves someone not you

You are genuine with feelings so true

Forgive I am skeptical about your healing.

So just breathe – 

Or probably shouldn’t.

Will her lovely fragrance not find your senses?

Stiffen your nose off this afoul condition

Take this advice and your aftermath is death.


Only if you must

Walk up to her and don’t talk uneasy.

Speak with passion and crazy

Then she would have known, felt and 

Believed that eyeballs do turn flames.

Show your fears only in words

Show recalcitrance to quit all the same.

And when she screams NO!

Hold her close, and gently stroke her hair

Walk away without one apology.

Then heal – 

Thank your Creator for ending your paranoia

Stop Celine’s blues.

Those are clues to suppress the ancient cues

But can you?

You love her beyond the blues

So get busy; be busy that you can’t think

Take the advice and harm your health.


And when you must go

Beware of earlier scenes of obtrusion

Take a bow

Call it a game; promise her no further tension

But tell her – 

She has an unknown right to know

You won’t stop loving her.

Do this and be close to that feeling

The feel of a cold heart and immediate body freeze.

But you will live on.

This way you show you have gone

But deep down your heart weeps and craves on.

You let go without self-deceit

You go now because you fought and lost.

So hope!

Today you are broken

Tomorrow you may be whole.

It’s fine to fight before using the door.

Break while you fight till cupid calls you lurid

Yes you were stupid!

Stupid in love and never timid to confess.

So hope!

Hope the inner noise knows tranquillity.

I can’t swear you will heal

But now you can go, if you must.


OKOCHA OBED