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POETRY

THE NUTS AND THE BICYCLE

Abu sits and spits his chewed kolanut on the ground
Wondering where his taste bud, this bitterness in it found
He looks around and hears a sound
Mba Hassan greets, pulls a stool and sits
…watching as Abu chews and spits

II
Mba Hassan can’t help but ask
What is giving a full grown man a task
Of chewing and spitting and basking in anger
When the rains have visited after a long while
Cooling the land with fanning breezes

III
“Mba, Zubeiru is like a bomb waiting to explode
Didn’t I do everything in my power to give him my best?
Look at these nails-
…the kolanuts they’ve picked
…the yam mounds they’ve dug
…the groundnuts they’ve planted
…and the many thorns they’ve battled
Where did I go wrong to end up with grammer which only hammer trouble
And promise only bubbles of successes
Which never reach the skies of my house before bursting?”
Mba Hassan laughs for long before engaging

IV
“Abu, you’re like my brother
The blood my parents failed to form for my company
So I’ll tell you a story I’ve never told anyone
But do call all your younger siblings
To be witnesses and learners”
Abu calls all his brothers and they sit together

IVb
“Once, there was a manufacturer
Who wanted to make a bicycle
He already had bolts but needed to make nuts
…and he did
The nuts were a little smaller
All he had to do was to struggle to tap them up a bit
But his laziness informed him about the great manufacturers beyond his borders
Having all the best tools to make big nuts
So he gave all he had to send his nuts to be remade and waited
Struggling to hold on till they arrived

IVc
When the nuts arrived, they were beautiful
They were enchanting
They shone with the sun and brightened with the moon
His community members came to watch in fascination
And he thanked his gods for the blessing

IVd
But time turned fascination and enchantment into expectations
So the manufacturer and talented metalsmith took his nuts and went back to work
Happiness had blinded him to how big his nuts were
Until he put them there and saw them dangling
Nothing he did could mend them
And re-manufacturing them to start over would be such a difficult task
He knew it was better to work on new ones
Because those nuts could never work on any bicycle, but he’d used all his resources on those
Mba Hassan stops and chews on his kola
Looking at the eight brothers as if he expects a reaction

V
“Mba, I told you about my disappointment with my son Zubeiru
Why are you telling me a story about a manufacturer and a metalsmith?
There is no such people in this family? No?”
All his seven brothers concurred
Mba Hassan laughs silently and speaks

VI

“You and the many who send your children to study abroad are the manufacturers
The children involved like Zubeiru are your nuts
This community and nation are the bolts and bicycle respectively
You sent someone from this impoverished community
To a developed nation where mosquitoes are non-entities
To learn, hoping to come back here to help develop this place
You forget that he tasted flawless transportation
How will he know how to fix our flawed?
And even if he knows
Will our people kill themselves in believing the stressful jargons he’ll throw around
Let alone follow his madness to develop?
Local problems need no international solutions
You built a mansion on a shrine
You must still act as the oracle
But your people will never recognize you as such
Let alone consult you
So I told you the story to listen and reason
It is only the unthinking who powers a bomb in his hands and leaves it to blow up
My mouth has fallen”

VIII
Mba Hassan gets up and leaves
Leaving the eight brothers speechless for a while
“Well, that was an overblown analogy and bolts and nuts are forged by machines
We must learn from those who know?”
Ridwan says
But none of the brothers respond
Until they start to disperse to their various huts
Amoafowaa Sefa Cecilia Β© April 29, 2020

By amoafowaa

Just a simple Ghanaian trying to find the best in our society. I may be fun, I may be interesting, I may be funny, I may even be foolish or intelligent, but it is all based on the mood in which you find yourself. I believe our minds make us who we are. Know that, pain, no matter its 'unbearability', is transient. Unburden or delight yourself for a while in my writings please. And all corrections, advice and opinions are welcome. Know that you are the king, queen or royal on this blog. :)

3 replies on “THE NUTS AND THE BICYCLE”

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