I see it is a beautiful Saturday morning, the sky looks brighter today, the trees worship, the goats seems to be singing to God in their language, but I do not worship, I do not even believe in God, I used to, but not anymore. If there be God, why…
You’re talking to yourself again, Amadi says, as he comes out of his house with his eyes looking like he got punched in his sleep. He sure is an ugly young man, his eyebrows remind me of the weeds on the cocoa plantation Mrs Eve had before she passed away, his eyes are too big, they seem like they will pop out to catch you if you dare stare at them. Oh his nose, they resemble the broken handle of a weeding hoe, not to talk of his lips, you will lose your face if you ever kissed them, but he is all I have now, he is the only man in this village that accepts to talk to me, I appreciate it like that.
What can a woman like me do, I said, talking to myself makes things better, it makes me better, all I have is myself, so let me talk to myself
You can not go on like this, marry me let me take care of you. My people are very loving and they will take care of you, he said as he drinks his palmwine
As far as I was concerned, he was not talking to me, the only thing I hear is the wind blowing as it passes me by.
I hate this wind, it’s too cold. I need to get inside and cover up. Good morning Amadi, I said, as I went into the hut to continue my episode…
I went to the market later in the day, I needed to make banga soup, but I do not have money, I have to beg mama Emma to give me food stuffs on credit, I will pay her when I get the money, I will pay her for others too, she is a good woman, she will give me, after all she is the pastor’s wife, she might even ask me to forget about the debt.
I am at her store now, but can’t go in. He is in there, he has been there for 20 minutes now, I have been watching him, he is telling her something, she looks upset, she is waving her hands in the air and cursing, she is shouting now, why is she shouting? What is he telling her? I am watching, he comes out, stares at me, he looks the same to me, bright eyes, broad shoulder, small lips, he did not change much,
You are doing fine I see, he says
I do not have money, I am not happy, please give me back my children and some money to feed, I said as the tears roll down my cheeks, they are very hot
Do not starve yourself to death, you’ve lost so much weight, eat well, I have to go, take care of yourself, he said and walked away in his usual lazy man style.
I’m still standing here, I can’t find the strength to move, what was he doing here?
Do you want anything Adamma, Mama Emma calls out, you stand there like you have just seen a ghost, are we safe?
I let out a sigh, We are safe, I replied, I just needed to make banga soup, I do not have money, I know that I am owing you plenty money, but I still have not found a way to pay back, I was wondering if you can help me out, I promise to pay you once I have your money, but if it is not okay by you, I totally understand
It is okay my child, I will give you, and you can pay whenever you want to, I am a very patient person, it is not easy with you, and I understand, it will be fine Nne, always keep that in mind, she said, and began measuring the palm fruits, handed them over to me with some bonga fish
you don’t have to pay for the fish, it is a gift, cook sweet soup o
Ah, thank you ma, God will bless you, thank you ma, the words seem to fade out my mouth as tears flood down my cheeks again, I was never a beggar, but begging now is my profession
She comes over to console me, it is okay, put yourself together and go home to make food and eat, don’t do this in public, biko, go home, go home ada, get some rest
I could not get any rest, I stared at the stainless plates with garri and soup, no appetite to eat, I begin to cry; but God why, why? I have no husband, no children, nothing, I am alone, I am now a laughing-stock, people mock me, and you stay there in your big throne, you did not do anything, anything to stop his parents from taking everything from me, they took even my children, ewo, God why? I hate you, I hate you so much that if I see you, I would kill you, oh, Okafor was a good man, a good husband, why would I kill a good man, why would I poison him, I am finished. I cried till my tears dried, at least I have this hut, that is all I have left, I thank you for that.
©2016. Ruth Brodrick