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Rhythm of Thought

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Poem

SHE DIED IN MY CAR

It is interesting to watch a radio man sitting under a tree dreaming of the day his dreams of a great Nigeria will come to pass.

“So, I have become a dreamer that don’t have to sleep to dream”.

I sat on a rock with a radio set waiting for the news caster to announce how millions of her people have been lifted out of poverty. I waited, but the news lady preferred to talk about the ex-governor who stole billions and decided to marry a virgin to refresh his rash libido.I turned-off the radio and began to dream again. I dreamt of a Nigeria building aero-planes and electric trains. I ran into one of the planes to fly it to France and announce to Francois Hollande that Nigeria has arrived.

“So, I have become the dreamer that don’t have to sleep to dream”.


I closed my eyes and saw Boko Haram coming

I saw Buhari screaming

I opened my eyes and saw Diezani crying

And Jonathan standing in anguish

“So, this is what dreams can do”

“Should I still remain a dreamer?”


I decided not to dream anymore and walked towards my car. Behold, a beautiful rag wearing little girl was standing by the driver’s door.I smiled at her, but she frowned at me. I asked what the matter was. She said I was wicked and selfish. That I hate her.

“But we have not met before”

“That’s not true, you drive pass me everyday but choose not to notice me”

I told her I was seeing her for the first time and apologized for unknowingly ignoring her in the past.


“Keep your sorry to yourself”, she said.


At this point I became disturbed and stooped, looked into her eyes and asked what she wanted. She ordered me to open my car that she wants to sit inside and know what it feels like. I opened the car and asked her in, then turned-on the air-conditioner. She entered, sat comfortably and breathed a sigh of relief, almost falling asleep. She looked at the back seat and saw my daughter’s car seat and asked what it was. I told her it was the seat of my ten month old daughter. She frowned and said, “So your ten month old daughter even has a special seat in a special car?”

“If your ten month old daughter can have a special seat in a car, I canimagine what her bed in your house looks like”

I didn’t know what to tell her.

She told me she sleeps on the bare floor in the market after the traders have gone home. That she only thinks of what to eat, not what to wear or the school to attend. She repeated; “you are a wicked man,who gives a 10-month old comfort and leaves a 7-year old helpless on the street”. At this point she brought out a small transistor radio from the cellophane bag she was holding and said “I know you”

“Are you not the radio man, Edmund Obilo?”


“Look at you!”


“You interview Governors, Ministers, Commissioners and Local Government Chairmen. You leave them to go scot-free without making them provide food for me”.


I told her I was only a radio man, not a police man. She then looked at me and said she was going to die in my car. She said she had waited for the day she would sit in an air-conditioned car. She said she had achieved her dream and had nothing else to leave for. “I have reached my last bus stop. I can die now and rest”.

I told her an air-conditioned car is nothing, that she can be the best by going to school and become a lawyer, journalist, doctor or banker. I could see in her face that she felt I was talking nonsense.

She then looked at me with an angelic smile and died.

She died in my car and became a dreamer who had to die to keep dreaming.

She died!

Our anger is an ant, it can’t move a paper

Our silence is shivering, it will die of cold

When a people dream away while their treasure is being looted, they will wake up to find themselves in the valley of despair.

Picture by Shane Thomas

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