“One day we will dance again & the light in our eyes will return but not today.”
I am shocked. I am confused. But mostly, I am upset. Upset with how quickly my head has come to terms with the fact that you have passed. How a night sleep can bring everything into clarity & one is no longer in disbelief. Disbelief was easy, denial was easier. My head heals, but my heart lags behind, lingers. Shook up, broken. & this disconnect makes me uneasy. Is that all you are worth? A couple of comments on a class group page & the whole world moves on the next day (or 3) like nothing happened.
One day, we will dance again & the light in our eyes will return but not today. Today, we will mourn you.
& we will move on, because even we know that is what you would have wanted. Always wanted the best for your students.
I desperately hope that you are resting well. Because I can’t think of anyone else who deserves that more.
For Dr. Anegbe.
A dozen years from now and I would still remember that it was a man with kind eyes that had saved me that night. The party had been too loud and dark with occasional green neon lights flashing and I’d just wanted to go home.
“You need to get out more,” had said my best friend from that first day in secondary school.
“Aren’t you a bit too old to be at a party like this?” I asked him.
“Aren’t you too young?”
I flushed, nodded and turned on my heels (which were killing me by the way).
“What do you want to do with your life?”
His question hung in the air, like a stubborn stain on a white shirt, dense, tense.
I turned around and nanoseconds passed. “I don’t know really,” I said with a nervous laugh.
He seemed disappointed and for some reason unbeknown to me (till this day), I felt the urge to make this stranger proud of me.
“Well, I could go into singing. But I heard it’s tedious. So, maybe modelling. I’ve been told I’m beautiful,” my lame attempt at a deep response.
“I believe beauty brings light,” said I and I didn’t know where it came from.
“You don’t need beauty. You have diligence. You’re good with a flashlight,” said he, with a twinkle in his eye.
And I realised the music had stopped.
A dozen years later and I would be standing in front of the audience, receiving the award for The Best Female Vocalist for the year. As the camera lights flashed, so did my life before my eyes and I realised it was a man with kind eyes that had saved me. From myself.
Who said you had to have fallen hopelessly in love or known the love of your own biological child to be able to feel certain things? Like commitment? Sorrow over loss? I mean, show me the law.
There I was at the phone repair place, sitting at the waiting room, waiting for the outcome of the surgery my phone was about to undergo. The sim tray area was diseased and before I had walked out of the theatre, the phone doctor was jabbing all sorts of sharps into my precious Q5.
What if my phone’s issue was hopeless and I’d have to lay it to rest? What if it was gonna cost more money than it already was? What if I’d have to keep coming back for more repairs? Or what if I was just exaggerating?
Truth is, we’re in some form of relationship with our cellular devices and we’re just as affected when anything goes wrong with them. Then sometimes we go through the thought process of to give up the phone or not. Should we stay committed? Is this love really worth it? Or like my friend would say, is it really that deep?
“It’s fine now,” he said.
Imagine my relief.
She called him; she had so much to say.
He didn’t pick up; he had nothing to say.
What makes her beautiful?
Is it her concavities?
The theory of (regretting) nothing.
Life is for the living, (noun).
Life is for the living, (verb).
Skin on skin, she is close enough to hear the thudding of his heart, smell his perspiration but she still senses the distance. Always has. For half the decade they have been together.
Along his tension lines is the scent of his mother absconding and the scars of his father’s brutal whipping.
“Why won’t you love me?” It is a whisper barely off her tongue.
It is not that he doesn’t want to. It is that he simply cannot. His heart is closed for business.
He pretends to be asleep. Her request is not wrong, he muses. It is only asked of the wrong person.