Wednesday, 10 April 2019

The famous mother of my community

Nna anyi, what are you thinking that since
yesterday you have not eaten anything”Mrs.
Udemba asked onowu his husband who at the
early hours of the morning came out with his
hands on the jaw
“Eeeh Nna anyi please talk to me”She inquired
and Onowu hissed shaking his head
“Nne,you won’t understand at all”He began
“What won’t I understand”Mrs. Udemba asked
sitting close to him
“This village is dying graduall,male children are
dying leaving just females. If our neighbouring
villages hear of this they will declare war on us
and overtake our land..Cheii!! Umuanyanwu
eeh”He lamented and the wife just looked at
him keeping quiet for words lacked in her
“The Great Egwuatu”Ikenga called from the
outside walking to Egwuatu, one of the able
youth’s house
“Onye ka m nuru olu ya (Who am I hearing his
voice)”Egwuatu popularly known as the greatest
wrestler in Umuanyanwu replied from within
“Kedu onye iche n’obu (Who do you think it
is)..It’s me”Ikenga said walking nearer to the
door and Egwuatu came out. They greeted and
sat down
“This one you came to my house this hot
afternoon,hope I am safe”Egwuatu questioned
“Haaa!!..Can’t I visit my friend again??”Ikenga
asked as a reply
“Noo. It’s not like that but as we all know a frog
does not run in the afternoon in vain,either it
is after something or something is after
it.”Egwuatu spoke in proverbs
“Ehhee..So You are calling me a frog now okwa
ya? Alright, let me come and start going (Kam
bia laba)”Ikenga said and stood up to leave but
Egwuatu held him back
“Jiri ya nwayoo (Take it easy). Can’t someone
play with you again afterall,it’s just a
proverb”Egwuatu said laughing and Ikenga
looked at him
“But cherekwa oo (Wait ooh). I’m not
lying,everybody in this village knows you as the
news caster even the town Crier is no match to
you”Egwuatu added and Ikenga disengaged his
hands and started to leave
“Ikenga come back now. You did not eat Kola
nuts oo”He called Ikenga but he didn’t turn
“Hahahahaha..Lee nu ka o di (Look at
him)”Egwuatu mocked him,stood up dusting the
little wrapper he tied around his waist in a
typical village youth way and went inside..
Noises and chirps of birds and different
animals were heard from the side path bushes
that led to the only stream in Umuanyanwu.
Young girls and average aged women were
seen carrying their calabashes on their head
going to and fro..Moments by moments, the
number decreased as the sun began to set,only
three ladies were left at the stream,they
dipped their calabashes into the stream as
Adamma, the Village parrot (Gossip) vomitted
all that was in her mouth
“Ladies have you not heard?”Adamma began
and Chimma and Adanna looked at her
“Heard what?”Adanna asked taking her calabash
out of the stream
“Don’t tell me you are not in this
village”Adamma said placing her hands Akimbo
on her waist
“Adamma,what is it this time”Chimma queried
“Heee..So you have not heard that it is no
longer twins that die in this village
again”Adamma said fancying her eyes
“What?”Adanna exclaimed
“You don’t mean it”Chimma added as they
walked out of the stream
“Male children now die also my sisters
ooo”Adamma said
“Heyyyy!!”They exclaimed
“Maazi Uchendu’s 3 weeks old male child died a
day before yesterday”She added
“Chi m oo (My God). What has befallen
Umuanyanwu”Chimma pitied the village
“But what might be the cause of all this
because the gods are keeping silent”Adanna
“Hmmm..I ka na-aju (You are still asking). It’s
the Prince”Adamma said with a lowered voice
looking around if someone saw her
“Chineke m oooo”Chimma exclaimed
“Adamma,you better keep your mouth
shut!”Chimma barked at her as Adanna placed
her hands in her mouth
“See,it’s not a lie. Don’t you see what he does
to the ladies of this land,molesting us as he
likes and his father is doing nothing about
it”Adamma said with all boldness
“See eeh,I won’t stand here and listen to all
this nonsense,Adanna I am going”Chimma said
and walked away
“Adamma jidekwa onu gi aka (Hold your
mouth) hmmm”Adanaa warned and left also
“I said it!!..The truth is always bitter. See them,
mtcheew. Let me be going home before my
mother begins to search for me”Adamma
carried her calabash and walked home
Little glows of light from the bush lamp placed
on the wooden table was seen as Anochie (The
flute Player) sat with his hands between his legs
and his flute always on his neck,he was lost in
thoughts that he did not recognise the
presence of his mother who stood watching
him for minutes. Later on, Anochie placed his
flute in his mouth an began to play a sorrowful
song with much melody..Little tears dropped
down his eyes as he played,but he was
interrupted by his mother who patted him on
his back and he shivered
“Haa..Mama,you have not slept”Anochie, a
handsome young man with a bit fair
complexion as his mother
“How can I sleep my son when you have been
out here for the past hours”Mrs.
Nworie,Anochie’s mother asked him
“Mama,it’s nothing”Anochie said
“See,you are even crying and you are telling
me that it is nothing”Mrs. Nworie said noticing
the tears in Anochie’s eyes so Anochie quickly
cleaned it adjusting his sitting position
“Eeh Nwa m (My Child),do you want me to die
premature? Since your father died,you have
been behaving this way,staying alone playing
flutes..Mere nu m ebere (Pity my condition).
Biko,let’s go and sleep”Mrs. Nworie’s words
touched the heart of Anochie so he held her
mother and stood up
“Let’s go and sleep Mama”Anochie said
“But you have not told me what is wrong with
you”Nworie adjusted looking at Anochie who
was not looking at her
“Pains are made for one to carry Mama,Sharing
to two will break up three situations Mama.
Let’s go to bed”Anochie said and his mother
withered at the words of his and stood up to go
with him. He placed his flute on his mouth with
one hand,playing a melodious song and the
other hand he used to hold his mother as they
walked in..

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