FEED THE RED PEBBLE

So fun mi pe o feran mi ..ko pamilerin
(Tell me you love me and I’ll smile)

So fun mi pe o nilo mi..ki n de wa pelu e
(Tell me you need me and I’ll be there)

Sugbon mase tan mi
(But don’t tell me these things if they are not true)

Tori ma a sokun gidi gaan
(my tears won’t be enough)

She defied all odds to be with this man, perhaps she had heard too many encouraging tales, or her day dreaming had placed her under the illusion that love was going to be her reward. Her parents couldn’t do much, for after her father screamed and her mother cried she wasn’t going to be held back by the pain they felt for her. She had found comfort in the night, her window being her escape route, love was calling her, its solemn voice fervently calling and that was where she wanted to be. The train took her far away to the arms of Wale, where she belonged or at least thought she belonged.

Life felt almost like magic at first, just the two of them together with no barricades restricting her from having what she desired. From the moment she met Wale she knew it had to be him or no one else but then her parents had other plans for her. Mr Oguniyi wanted her in his “garden”,he was very popular and also influential, he had several wives already but he also shared the notion that “ogogoro” always tasted better when served from a different cup. Her parents didn’t have much of a choice, Her father worked in Oguniyi’s saw mill and refusal meant early retirement for him. So they pushed and pressed her, “Se o fe pami ni” Papa always used to say and Mama was always sad, but she wanted to carve her own fate, mold her destiny and that night she took her first stand.

The first Few years with Wale were full of love, they stood strong like the palm tree, she was a loyal wife and a loving partner. All she wanted was to be there for him and she really did try. She didn’t have any exposure or education and her daily routine was working on the different plantations and getting paid very little money. Wale wasn’t any better, he didn’t tell her what he did for a living but she noticed the stains on his “agbada” whenever he got home so she knew it couldn’t be good. Children soon joined them and they became one happy family until the sun set upon them but they didn’t embrace the moonlight for that would have been comforting, they were faced with something steeper and dark.
When life turns and twirls, the reflection of love fails to hold meaning, for a man’s belly is his only true lover, so he must seduce it with food and comfort or else every other thing holds no gain. That was the plight she was faced with for just when she thought she had done everything right by leaving home her skies began to rain. With the arrival of children came difficulties and it stretched them to the limits, but like elastic she thought they would hold after all love was about surviving in good and bad times but Wale slumped so bad that she couldn’t recognise him, the true resemblance of the man he had once been resided in the past.

Wale became a demon of some sort,the late nights “Kai-Kai” became his new love, he neglected the kids and even his loving wife. His inability to provide for his family was seriously eaten hard on him but little did she know that it was just beginning. He soon became very aggressive on the children and most times he beat them for little or no reason, Most nights she secretly cried scared that the children might hear her, she prayed and hoped that by some miracle things would get better and Wale would change for good. Then one day the worst thing happened, he came back home that day drunk as usual, smelling almost decomposed and she just knew she wasn’t going to have any more, she decided enough was enough so she confronted him! She threw fire to gun powder that night for he beat like he was playing the drums for the village masquerade, if not for the rare heroics of her children perhaps she would have slipped to the afterlife that night.

From that day reality dawned on her, she knew her husband was no more, he had deserted her a long time ago, she knew she had to be the father and mother to her children, she was alone on the journey, her valley had suddenly become a steep hill. So often she questioned the decision she made years ago, wondering why she never saw the signs. She wondered why love so fat and flourishing could so easily go pale and dry but it was all too late now, the love that once resided in her heart had long evaporated and all she felt now was fear and pain. Then one day she retuned from the plantation with the children and noticed Wale was home, which was unusual and she felt perhaps that was a good sign but that was cut shut once she entered into her house. Few steps away from her was the body of Wale dangling from the ceiling; eyes bulging, neck broken! Her hero had suddenly withered so bad and willingly deserted her.

LOVE is real……….but when POVERTY sets in it’s tested to its limit.

Up to 70 per cent of women experience violence in their lifetime, according to country data and several relationships are ruined due to poverty.

*Se o fe pami ni-Do you want to kill me

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