Dear Bolanle,

How are you? I can see you have been doing fine from the pictures uncle Bayo showed me, but I think you still look better with buba and wrapper than those pants you wear and think you are covered. You know the wicked mosquitoes in this village has drawn a map on your skin, and it does not look nice, even though that girl I saw in the picture you took at the beach, would think your skin is perfect because hers is a bee nest. You need to hide that bad skin of yours so that you can bring home a fine man o, and a rich man too.

Eh, uncle Bayo says he has been sending my letters, but you have not replied even one, but I will still write, I enjoy talking to myself in the letters, but please try to reply me, so that my heart will sleep peacefully, I am very worried about you. I hope you are still a good girl, you know we are proud of your moral conduct, so don’t let us down.

Things around here have been dark since mama passed away, I now go to balogun market every Saturday to restock the shop, so Lanre and Titi will not die of hunger. I miss you, I do it all by myself, I wash, cook, run the store, its has not been easy. Well, I have hope that when you return, you will wipe my tears and make me proud with your humour, oh how I miss your bone cracking jokes.

Lanre is fine, he played the masquerade for the new yam festival and fell into the gutter after Father Clinton’s house because he had too much palm wine. He broke his leg, but he is fine, he is a man, he will survive the pain. Titi now plaits hair, she has learnt it so well that she gives me different styles that makes me fine. And me, I am also fine, only that I wonder why nobody wants to marry me, am I so ugly? No man in this village has brought wine, I am not getting younger, I am sad, maybe I should be patient. Well, I have removed it from my mind, and put taking care of you, Titi, and Lanre in it.

You should try to visit soon, your friend Tolu passed away last nite, she did not survive to enjoy the joys of motherhood, in here, I have attached a picture of her baby girl, she named her after you, hoping she will achieve what you have achieved.

This is where I will stop for now, until I write again. I know Uncle Bayo thinks I am mad, but I am not, your death is something I will not accept.  How is it possible that you are dead eh? No o, to me, you are still alive and will return home, my fine sister. So take care of your self. I love you and miss you… Hope to see you soon, I will be waiting.

Your sister,

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©, this short story should not be used or shared without the permission of the author.


You’re such a stupid girl
Will you ever be pragmatic?
See how you’ve turned ugly
And yet you think he adores you
Is that why you came back?

You are with no sense
Yeti took your virginity
And slapped your face
He chased you away
And yet you came back

You look like a madwoman
Look at you, are you not an ignoramus
Your skin is crumpled from his hands
Your breasts have already fallen
And yet you came back

He pours soured wine on you
Then calls the dogs to lick it off you
Treats you no better than a whore
And calls you his wife; what?
And yet you came back

Your face has swept his robe
He pounds you in his laps
Your laps have no respect in public
For he tells your tale in the bar
And yet you came back

You sold your beauty for a fool
You know this, and you regret it
Yet you like it, the way he holds you
You don’t mind the pain, you love him
And that’s why you came back

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


The gunshots made us forget we were soldiers
It made us forget our oath, to defend at all times
And to serve selflessly, for we serve now selfishly
Begging for our blood to stay with us till dawn
And the thoughts of our families evades our purpose
Giving us more and more reasons why we must survive
We ran so fast, that our feet could hardly catch up
We searched for a hide out, yet safety dodged from us
But under the bushes we layed, with hay as our cover
We held on to faith, praying for our selfish motives

We prayed for survival, to see our families again
To hold our children and tell them bedtime stories
To see our wives and love them like we never left

For a moment, we could feel the kindness of silence
And taking our stand in tears, we knew it was all over
We hugged in tears, with decors of smiles on our faces
Alas! Our joy escaped without our questions answered

Bark! Bark! Bark!
The search dog came running after us
For a while we stood flummoxed at his survival
He was stolen by the enemies before the war
So where did he come from?  How did he find us?

‘Oh, shut up you silly dog’, you’d get us all killed

Then we saw the blinking red light, then we could hear the tick

‘It looks like a trap, a bomb’; someone screamed

We scampered for our lives, but we were late, too late
He was close already, close enough that we had to accept death

Boom!!! he went off before we found safety

On the floor we lay, wrestling with our spirits for a second chance
We held our hands together, as we sang the team song for the last time
Hoping that our last cry, will uphold the victory we were fighting for…

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This prose poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


“Let my hands be watered
by the rivers of love that flow out of your lips
Let your innocence brood over me
like sapphire and daunting like heaving
Let my pain be healed
by the power of your sweet embrace
and caress my hidden pleasures”

For such are the words
of a patient bride

A bride who sits in a cold dark room
waiting for the sun to stand still on her course
To melt the ice from her stale soul
and ignite the warmth of the fire he set within her
In the midst of her drowsy day
is the thought of the humour of his love
rising like the troubled sea
yet with the pace of peaceful waters of the great sea

Touch not the sun to shift from its stand
for it gives light to her little corner
The night only blinds her expectant spirit
and buries the perfect cliché
She dreamt a dream of entwined roses
turning into a tree of plummeting ego
An ego to bloom, grow
and eventually become the rest that never ends
A rest that sets the rough wings
of the broken angel anew and glowing

For each page of  her life’s chapter
bears a heart that beats restlessly in patience
A heart that carries the answers
to her fading prayers and trembling questions
A heart that bears the reason
of her solemn patience and endless imaginations
For neither the paleness of the grey walls
nor the shadows of fear will stop the wait

For her patience grows aggressive and hot
as she waits, yet tamed by the fever of her desires
The desires that are sweet as lemonade
and coarse as soured wine
She plunges into faith
as she sits in the dark
awaiting the return of her groom…

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


I watched a group of neighbourhood kids battle their way up the fence of an abandoned building, one of the kids had a broken leg and was supported by another kid as they climbed the ladder.

My curiosity swallowed me, so I couldn’t stand there watching, I walked towards them to find reasons for myself. I asked one of the kids what was going on, he said they were trying to retrieve their ball, it went over the fence while they were playing. I asked why the kid with the broken leg had to climb the ladder too, and why was he helped by the other boy?, Then the boy said, some friendship are more stable than religion, I asked why he said that, then he told me the story…

Lucas is 10 years old and has a brother Fred, who lives in the city. Fred came home last Christmas, and got Lucas this Nintendo series, Lucas knowing how much kids in the neighbourhood wanted it, had asked Fred for it as a Christmas present. Now its the new year, Lucas sure is the ‘bigger kid’ because of his new game. One day, he went running errands for his granny, by the time he got home, Granny was asleep, poor old granny got Alzheimer, and by the time she wakes up, she wouldn’t remember a thing.

With his tired bones, he walked lazily to his room, to clear his head with his game, and wait to be Granny’s little brain, he got to his room to find his game broken to pieces, he couldn’t believe it, he just couldn’t believe it. The rage and anger he dived in, was too cloudy for his age, he rode off on his bicycle to Pete’s house. Pete is his buddy and they got into a fight recently, so he was sure Pete had an idea on what happened to his game.

Last Tuesday, Pete came over to his house as usual for a visit, while they were playing together, Pete mistakenly stepped on the Nintendo, and Lucas became upset, and cursed on Pete, asked him to leave his house and go to his broke family who can’t afford anything nice for her son. Pete was furious and told him he will never see the game again, and left the house…

Pete! Pete! He screamed; as he banged on the door of Pete’s house,
‘Sup buddy, you know how to chase a fine evening away’ Pete’s said as he came out of the house

‘What the hell did you do to my game’ Lucas said as tears came running down his cheeks

‘I just thought you a little lesson Lucas, next time you try being the boss, remember you have to be a man, because you will always be stricken by your rudeness’ Pete said as he laughed at Lucas

‘You devil’ Lucas cried out as he pushed Pete to the floor
Pete stood up and pushed Lucas back, then they got into a fight, Lucas who is smaller, tried to get away realizing he couldn’t beat his enemy, but was dragged back by angry Pete. Across then was a Barton, Lucas reached for it and hit Pete so hard that Pete fell to floor and was bleeding,

‘Oh my God, Pete, Lucas cried as he shook Pete , but Pete wasn’t responding,

Lucas heard the door open, ‘Pete, why are the lights still on’ it was Pete’s mum,
He didn’t know if he should run away or stay there with his friend,
After all, they’ve been buddies for years, he was so sorry for hurting him

‘Don’t die on me Pete, I love you, please don’t go, am sorry’ he cried, holding on to Pete’s bloody shirt

‘What happened here’ Pete’s mum cried as she ran towards them, call 911 she yelled as she ran to hold her son…

Lucas sat on a chair close to Pete’s bed, the doctors said it was a minor case, and that once Pete recovers from the shock, he will be fine. But Lucas was so scared, he knew too well what will happen if Pete doesn’t wake up, so he couldn’t stop praying. He remembered what his Sunday school teacher told him
‘God is always there to heal, forgive and answer us, all we need to do is invite him’, so there was Lucas, inviting God.

He opened his eyes, and his eyes met with Pete’s, Pete seemed to have been up while Lucas prayed,

‘Am sorry Pete, I didn’t mean to hurt you so bad, maybe a little, but not like this, am so sorry’ Lucas said

‘Its okay Lucas, it was my fault, I shouldn’t have destroyed your game, am sorry, Pete replied

‘So am I forgiven, are we friends again?’ Lucas asked

‘We never stopped being friends B-U-D-D-Y’ Pete said

…so here they are playing again, and Lucas here is trying to help Pete not to miss out from the fun, the boy said as he ran away to join the others retrieve the ball… rs

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This short story should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


…just as the Christmas songs are sang only during Christmas, I finally got my prayers answered
I was finally given the key to a house I always wanted to explore
Maybe because I believed it was housing my heart’s desire or maybe not
For years, I have waited to be in possession, and finally here I am with the ‘key’
I can see my soul dancing through the meandering waters of peace

I stood at the entrance, with my hope held high, and faith as my guide
I slotted in the key, and there was I, in the house, but it was empty
As empty as a house that was recently vacated by its occupants
I stood there wondering why, and what could have happened to it
Then I heard a voice beckoning me to come closer and it was coming from the hallway
So I moved closer, and closer, and closer, holding my breath with each step
I could feel my head swim in the shadows of my lost thoughts as I walked
My feet suddenly grew numb, I could feel the rush of blood through my arteries as they dilate
Suddenly, it was like the walls were falling apart, and the floor was sinking into the ocean
There was earthquake, and the foundations shook violently, then I screamed
But I wasn’t the only one screaming, he was screaming with me, and it was like a sweet melody
Suddenly, there was calmness, the foundations seemed to have made peace with him
And I was holding in my hand a star, it was so bright, I could barely keep my eyes fixed on it
Then I looked up to see his face, but I couldn’t, it was covered in light, brighter than neon lights
Then I drowned only to open my eyes and I was at the entrance again
With the key in the key hole but not tilted to open the door
I stood there pundering about what I thought and what I did not think
Then I realized that I had a greater challenge, a fierce battle ahead of me
One I cannot overcome alone, I needed that voice, that man, that light to help me
For even where my desires are, there are battles I must win to own them
He helped me own this one, and I tell you, I feel new, brand new, like a refined gold
Quickly, I slipped the key into my purse, and I know that ‘nothing will take you away from me’, I said to key as I drove away…

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This prose poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.

Worry Less, Make Today Beautiful

Iread is not meant to only please the readers mind but to quench the thirst of reading…
This write up forsees the debt we bind ourselves to by staying bound to our mistakes, and helps us recover from it

Often, we punder about the mistakes we made while yesterday still lived
We let ourselves wallow in yesterday and forget it has become our past
We get so cooked up that we forget we have today to nurture and walk through
We ache ourselves for things we cannot change, so I ask,

        “Why do we make ourselves slaves to yesterday’s mistakes?”

As the clock ticks, it takes our today in its 24hour cycle, and at its expiration, it becomes yesterday
And in turn, yesterday becomes our past, and our past remains as our memory

We should refuse living in a world tied to the mistakes of yesterday because it holds no tie with today
It only enchants our soul to hallucination and fills our mind with worry and uncertainty
Yesterday came and made its mark, whether good or bad, and so will today
Let us not spoil the works of today by placing the ends of yesterday on its path
Sometimes, the reason things happen to us today is basically because we still live in the pain and mistakes of yesterday
Remembering them is no sin, but building walls around them so we can live in, is the greatest sin
Eventually these walls projects into today and causes commotions, and then again, we have today elope without fulfillment

As a new day begins, let us consciously make blank the pains of yesterday, so we can meet the demands of today
And if we still find it difficult to escape from yesterday, let us rather use it as fuel
Fuel to spark the desires to make today better than yesterday, so we can have a wonderful tomorrow
A wonderful tomorrow is one that is free from the worries of the mistakes that was made yesterday, hence today was better
We should not sit back and let the pain of yesterday ruin the makeup of today
Those mistakes happened to make us learn, so we can be stronger, wiser and better

The beauty of living is wrapped around the mind, a healthy and steady mind yields a beautiful life
Worrying about yesterday makes our mind unhealthy, how then do we expect to have a  beautiful life?
We actually cage ourselves when we worry, and unless we break free, today remains captured and enslaved
Let us work consciously to tame worrying about yesterday, its gone, let us let it go and set today free for exploits
Treat today with humor and love, for its a gift we exchange for tomorrow…

Make today beautiful…

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This prose poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.

A Tale Of The Foolish

All that is left of us are plastics
We traded our gold for selfish moments
Hid our silver, but the merchants stole it
Our bronze, we turned into carved effigy’s
Sold to the streets for a penny-less penny
Buried our iron, hoping to be thankful after winter
But alas, the rusted bars rejected our wet hands
We got nothing to lose as we crave for more
Every broken piece of our glassy hearts
We carried along for acceptance
We were no longer found in the skies
Rather we dreaded in the fallen madness of fame

With decayed patches of our wooden soul
We strive to emit no more glamour
We watched our very own, perish before our eyes
We blame not the spirits, we blame ourselves
Our single greedy minds brought us here
Death found us wanted, yet too dead to die
Lessons we learnt, made us realize how foolish we were
We had it all, all the world ever needed
And we lost it all, all the world never had
Foolishness isn’t a curse, is only a mockery of our wisdom
We thought we solved it, but we only progressed the equation
This and that, here and there, we opted for a reason to live
We found none, because the reason we lived was vain

We fell, and we will all rise, at least so we believed
But we were wrong, so wrong!
We fell but not all will rise
For some still lived in their foolishness
Nothing can change the mistakes made in the past
We only got now to learn the rule of no more mistakes
We used the plastics, we made the jewel
Not of so much quality, but it had the basics
The beauty beheld, was the beauty of repentance
Truly, we are a fallen nation, and we’d still fall again
But we used the fallen to gain self wisdom
Even though we rose, our rising suffered
We lost it to the wisdom of the ignorant cups
For they will still fall, and lose it too
It still doesn’t give us any immunity
Because all we got left are plastics…

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This prose poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.

A New Word For Love

“distant from the cool breeze of the nile,
comes sparkling the chemistry of two hearts…”

If love were to be the story we tell to make life look endowed, then we’re lost
The story should be the inner crumble for our passion to ignite us
Emotions are better thick than thin, for in thickness, it fades the cruel path
As my heart runs to fit the hollow of your pain and the swell of your truth
Let it find the whispers to grind the certainty that is sown
Out of my thousand lips, comes a lip dauntless as saphire
My pitched flag dances to the column of your bizzard reasons
I wear a colour i give to your heart, because i see it as my best
For treachreous ones wear a universal colour of tinted stones

I chose patience because it drains the soft ice of immortality
And professes the diety we nuture, to bring the sun rising again

If i wound trying to place my hope on this anchored tale
Let the healing be slow and quick, so that my efforts work in pride
For you have become my addiction, and I have found a new word for love…

…distant from the cool breeze of the nile,
comes sparkling the chemistry of two hearts
wrapped with the tenancity of their desires
projecting a new word for love… “US”

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


…He opts to be a preacher soon

The dedicated soul searches for purity

Deciding never to turn to his past again

He wraps it up and dumps it in faith’s arms

Builds up the threshold of changed man

And a bridge of honest emotions

His journey was entwined around his actions

As he searches to find a soul to change

He dances around life’s unending snobs

But, he must have a soul wrapped to himself

As an evidence of his repentance

Walking along the street, he found a disturbed teen

He speaks words of diluted grace to him

He touched the soul of the young thief

Because he was once a replica

And not that he knew the totality of his new faith

For he only just turned a new leaf last night

And was eager to test the waters of purity

But his faith was wavering and blank

He returns to his home with a weary mind

For the journey wasn’t so easy as he thought

After seconds of provocation and dares

He dropped his faith and took the gun

He shoots down the labored woman

For just a penniless purse of wax

And a gross outfit of eroded pair of jeans

He would be the same no more

For he cursed the faith he denounced

His life became a plate of painful regrets

For he’d roam till he finds his doom

But he roamed to find the continuity of joy

As he came across a board with the inscription

“Forgivenesss”, his soul cried for help

Help came, this time with the strength to pursue purity

And his journey began, not with the old wavering faith

But with the faith that grows without wavering

He opted to be a preacher, and so was he…

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


Buried within the woods he made
His dumb body suffocates with rot
His feet squeezed to fit into his works
His body mass too swollen for acceptance

Ajayi, the coffin maker was a good man
To good for death to have spat on
He never wished for the bad of his people
Even though he needed them to survive
Even on their sick beds, he prayed for them
He was death’s alibi and was ignorant to this fact
He made the coffins with strength and zeal
Yet he barely gained from it to survive
He made twenty coffins a year and sold only two

He forgot he needed them for his survival
His wrinkled hands could use the nail no more
He loaned out his gifted hands in remorse
And was stricken by the angel when the time came
Before his death, he sold twenty coffins
He was skilled because it was a tradition of his fathers
The first son was to take over from his predecessor
Ajayi was the only child of his father and was left no choice

Just like his fathers,one coffin was always left behind
For the death keeper must walk in death
And buried within the works of his hands
He was aware and kept the best for himself
Alas! When his soul journeyed yonder
The coffin had suffered the beat of nature
And was no fit for a man like Ajayi
He broke the curse, for he wasn’t buried in his work
But in the work of his wife, for she was a seamstress
And made for him a bedding of death
Taking the curse on her head and to her daughters
Letting the sons have a coffin free life

Ajayi the coffin maker, was a good man
And so was his wife now, the maker of death’s bed
A family to serve till death…

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


In a world where chaos is booming and living is at the expense of death’s credibility, what shall we anchor our hope to?

At the smile of the rising sun, we make new plans, strategize and plunge into the unknown, with hope as our lens
Somewhere between doubt and faith hangs the magic to our productivity and the desire to succumb to success

If we let the world and its chaos govern our outcome, then we are weak and poor in sight, for the world is blind to the faith we pursue
Slanderous and suffocating is the voice of the shadows that seek our fall, but they make the mind of the courageous thicker and hopeful

As our hearts grasp the fertility of our visions, encompassing the green of a better life, let us cling to the truth of our existence and nurture the happiness that drives our determination.

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This prose poem should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.


Life is a broad placard of our actions
It bears the pain and beauty of our emotions
Sometimes, we wish to elope from the things we regret
But we can’t , because regret is only a mirage of our past
Accepting our mistakes and learning from them is our salvation
Learning from them only makes them a stepping stone to  better life
Truth is, we never will understand ourselves if certain wrongs didn’t go
The more we flutter about , the more we grow to find ourselves
And finding ourselves, makes us realize that ” our past is the reason we have a future ”

We can’t delete the mistakes we’ve made
They only become irrelevant with time
Most often we wish they never happened
Especially when they’re getting entwined with our lives
And making mockery of us
We try to blame others for our mistakes
And blaming others only stagnants us
But accepting the blame for our actions
Creates a responsibility in us that we are unaware of
It makes us a police man of our actions
And this makes us better and stronger

The truth is, a man with no mistake
Is a man that is yet to understand the strategies of recovery
And the secrets to a better life

Life is beautiful
No matter how ugly our placard looks
It always gets better as we grow older
Our mistakes fade into timeless tunnels
And we find reasons to be thankful for them

We should leave our mistakes behind and furge ahead
The reason we live is a synonym to the reason we learn everyday
And a lot is learnt from our mistakes



We were young, naive, and fun seeking
We would carve out images from the palm tree or plantain tree leaves which might end up as a warrior or the face of a man
We would sit under the moonlight wishing we could pluck the stars and save it forever
We would point our torch to the skies just to see its reflection among the stars
We keep wondering why the sun keeps chasing us and never stop when we travel
Or why the road seems wet and gets dry when we get to the spot we thought was wet
We keep trying to catch rain drops but they always slip away from our grip
We often wish to elope to the cartoon world where all things are possible even flying without wings
We create imaginary friends so they can serve as solace when everyone annoys us
We always try to run towards the setting sun to see if we could catch it
We try to do abrakadabra tricks on situations thinking we are the Wizard of Oz
We even try to be animals to see what the jungle feels like
We did more mind-blowing acts in bid for perfection…

Now we are adults, we understand that perfection is a quirk we must strive to attain
We can now laugh at the tricks childhood played on us, although we often wish we could have that naïve life back and start each day thinking we can save the world… 4372177b724bfe6df32860cc7bd76170

<a href="Hindsight” title=”hindsight”>

By Ruth Brodrick. All rights reserved ©. This article should not be shared or used without the author’s permission.