You Asked Me To Write

There are so many things I wanted to say to you, I kept thinking, would it make Dee feel sad, will he choose to kill our friendship with silence? I think I was afraid of that for a long time, so I kept mute. All the times I should have told you to your face that what you did was bullshit I kept quiet.


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It’s almost always better writing with someone in mind, writing to someone you know, it makes it more palpable, it makes you want to write more, want to pour out your soul. Perhaps that’s why writers are told to have a specific person in their head when they write.

I’ve somehow managed to hoard some time for myself in which I used to stay in my own cocoon, surveying my left nipple. It hurts so bad and it’s not from the constant nibbling of the child but something else. I have hurt myself, I can see the red blood glowing underneath my delicate skin and yes, the child without a tooth have nipped at my nipple so much she peeled off my flesh. It hurts and till it heals I think I should have to be careful with it and take her further away.

I remember my time in the car, I looked at my phone screen it was 19:00 and I drifted in and out of a beautiful wonderland I could not describe. I couldn’t explain myself to the world, to the people in the car with me, Mr. A was talking but all I wanted to do was sleep and lean into the cool fresh air of the Enugu wind. Only a day before I had spent two hours washing till my hands were numb and my body was sore.

I knew I had worked enough for a night, I knew I should rest but I wanted to complete it and so I asked for more clothes, another round was added to me, I was tired, defeated, couldn’t she see it in my eyes. I took them all like a brave girl and slammed them inside the washing machine. I promised I’d be done by 9pm, but it was 9:22 now and I still had one more round to go.

I went out of the kitchen door, with the house still as a cemetery and just me alone in the world. I looked up at the moon, big, bright, beautiful, I felt this rush, this energy I cannot describe and I thought of a movie I had watched years ago, of a girl who turned mad when she looked at a full moon, it was around that time I had discovered the word Lunatic was adopted from the moon. I wondered too at this time on the 29th day of April if I too was lunatic, somehow influenced by the moon. I never try to entertain that thought since I knew what lunatic meant in entirety.

I wanted to talk about the moon, I wanted to call someone, anyone, and say oh see how the moon shines today. But there was no one to call, and you won’t be bothered with trivialities like this. So I braced myself up for the work I had left. I had my bath and flung myself on the bed, tired, weak, thinking about my father’s house and how I would never be found washing clothes at this ungodly hour.

You want a letter, I want to tell you the grand contemplation of my mind. The minute I put you in the picture then I begin to hide some things away, you would do the same thing too. We don’t tell the truth in entirety, we condition it to fit the person it is directed to, so I’d rather prefer I pretend I’m never going to give you this letter how else would I tell you about my nipple.

The air is warm here and some days are so hot I don’t care what anyone thinks I wear only some sort of bra within the house, the roof seems to be on fire and the floor seem to be heated with sulphur, my eyes burn in this type of weather I wish I could give them a rest, I wish I could shut my eyes and sleep but I never do that. Instead I wait and pray that the night brings something better like the three consecutive nights I first spent here, one of which I told you about, I was absolutely excited to tell you this new nature secret I thought I had discovered- the storms here are to die for. You didn’t seem interested. Yesterday seem to be like one of those nights, I had just finished answering your call and I was lying on my bed, nibbling chin-chin and drink Amstel malta when the cold wind swept through the left window. The kind of salty wind that you knew announced a heavy rain. I braced myself up for it, I was so ready, I would enjoy it, the songs of the wind, the sound of the thunder and the pouring rain that made you so want the body of another and hold your body to yourself when you find nobody.

The power immediately went off and I knew it was coming. It didn’t fall, I waited but it didn’t fall. I know despite myself I might pick my phone and call you, such a waste to enjoy this beautiful moment alone I though and oh Dee it’s a beautiful place to be in, it’s like being sheltered by a cave when there is a horrendous hurricane going on, it’s the type of rain that keep you in fear, where you are awed and scared at the same time , where you hold whatever you hold dear close to you, where you somehow understand that all the turmoil outside can’t get you and where you want a damsel to protect or in my case a man whose strong body shelters you emotionally from the storm. I spend those nights alone, I must be a strong woman indeed, I spent them in awe of God, thinking about the creatures that lay outside totally helpless to this situation. I hoped the trees won’t cave in defeat and then I slept.

Since I cannot tell the whole truth in its entity I wonder which truth I should speak and which I should leave out. I wonder if you ever know that what you see aren’t all there is to life and that life is truly like a prism, but a multi-faceted one where each of us get to look at a side and that the only way we get to see or understand the other sides of life’s prism is through people. What should I say and what should I leave, how do I tell you that you actually only know a little about me, about life. Should I tell you about the times I spent lifting water till I thought my fingers would break from the weight, should I tell how my long beautiful hands carried things you’d never imagine how I worked like a man, how I carried cement and water and gravel and sand on my head till I thought, my head would sink into my neck. No, you won’t know, neither would you know about the numerous nights I spent memorizing your smile and saying, this should be worth it, this should be worth it. I can survive another day thinking about this boy’s words.

Let me tell you about Mister A, you still remember him? It was a Sunday evening and I was sitting besides him reading a book of trivial nonsense, my head was banging but I had promised myself that I would finish it anyway, then I did. then I went into his shrine to get more books and I scanned to the book I regretted not picking the first time, drunk with love, I walked to the bed room to find him there lying on a large king size bed still on the phone and I sat, on the large dressing chair with the child. Looking at myself in the mirror, I was beautiful, it’s not every day like this I find time to put on a dress, I liked the girl in the mirror so far we have been alone and he had said nothing about my dressing.

”I’ll be leaving soon “ I said

“why” he pouted “what if I offered you a job”

I didn’t know if he was joking or if he was serious, I named my price even when I didn’t know what I would be doing. After we had finished talking I thought about it again. Do I want to stay in Enugu? Really? would I want to leave everything at home and live here? Really? If I did that would mean I would be responsible for the child and my I don’t want to be. People have a way of dumping things at you once you’re always available. Like now, I’m holding the baby and typing with only my right hand, while her mother sleeps in the other room, see what I mean. He finally complimented me on my beauty and I felt great he noticed. We talked, we talked about his job and his house and his need for money and his two sons, whom I want to meet by the way. I wander if they are half as endearing as their father. His first son is older than I am by the way.

Mr A is a queer man indeed. When I first met him I kept my distance like I should and was alarmed when he called me evil and the child’s mother wicked. But she laughed and I decided that this man must be really cynical. He asked me questions and would correct me calmly in the middle of a conversation. He talked to me like I was his friend rather than someone his daughter’s age.

“oh lord” I exclaimed when I felt the cold breeze on my skin

“Honey please don’t say that that way again”

“How? why “ I protested

“It sounds like a response you’d give to a mind blowing orgasm” I laughed from shock and embarrassment wondering where on earth this man came from.

He’d worry about us and say I’m the wicked cousin that won’t bring the child to him. At any given time of the day I was bound to see a woman in his house. When the Child’s mother wore only her tights and camisole I was shocked and when she fed the child in front of him with her big breast covering the child’s face he did not flinch.

I’m telling you about my time here, because it’s better I tell them to someone at least. It’s been both boring and exciting to stay here. I wonder why you wanted this, sometimes you do these things, you get a flash of Eureka and you want something from me to flame it up. Other times you just want to look into my eyes. My body comforts you, my entire personality brings you joy or hope or possibilities, I don’t know. You keep coming to me like I’m a harmless drug, an addiction that you can’t get rid of.

You come to me when you need to fill you up and when you’re done drinking you leave. I come for you too when I need some filling up so that’s not the problem, the problem is I come to you all the time. if my timing meets yours,{ and most times it doesn’t}, we wouldn’t have a problem, but if it doesn’t then it seems I have no business with you and somehow that’s not enough. I was happy being that person to you, but I don’t want to be that anymore, It’s good I’ve made you happy in some way but that will be all now, when you stare at me and look into my eyes I would never have imagined that you had a selfish reason, but you did. Whether you knew you did know or not is what I don’t know.

Everyone Is selfish, sometimes love/lust make us skip our personal reasons to care for the next person. With us you always told me plainly this would go no where. You were not ready to be committed to be but you enjoyed the perks that come with being around me. My eyes warmed your soul, my body soft and succulent, my ears listened to your quagmire while my mind, oh my mind resonated like a beating drum to yours. In the end, it was better being with me than being alone. I was a distraction till the main meal came around. I knew this and I stuck around. How much more foolish can anyone be

There are so many things I wanted to say to you, I kept thinking, would it make Dee feel sad, will he choose to kill our friendship with silence? I think I was afraid of that for a long time, so I kept mute. All the times I should have told you to your face that what you did was bullshit I kept quiet. All the time I should have protested I kept quiet until I did not know who I was anymore.

Silence is not a good thing sometimes, the perfect moment passed and I never got the chance, whenever I thought of it, my paranoid mind would say I’m being over reactive for something I should have gotten over by now, I suppressed all those feelings inside, when they threatened to explode they would go with a loud burst.

You fear confrontation, I take things head on, you’d rather pretend that everything is alright, as if silence were a confirmation. You couldn’t deal with my anger, heck you couldn’t deal with anyone’s anger, even your own. You preferred to walk on tip toe, just go along with the all-is-right charade.

You couldn’t handle my madness you make me feel stupid for getting angry at you, I began to think my feelings were invalid. They weren’t. they aren’t. Even now I should have told you that:

• Touching me when I repeatedly asked you not to was wrong

• Making me choose between you and your friend was wrong

• Telling me about the girls you’ve been with & want to be with while knowing I liked you was a disregard for my feelings

• Manipulatively using the fact that I loved you to get what you want was wrong

And so much more that time and my defacing memory will not allow me dictate now, but which I have written down, of which are well accounted for, of which one day you’d have to face.

Well, what else do you want me to say? I have said plenty haven’t I, and there are still more to be said but it’s always good to keep a bit of mystery around you by not revealing too much. I think I can say “see what large letters I’ve written with my own hands” like Apostle Paul said. The rest I would deliver with my mouth.

I will soon stare at the ocean and hear it calling out to me, and when I do maybe you would hear the ocean call you to greatness too.


  1. Toyin Oladipupo
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