(A Quarterly International Peer-reviewed Refereed e-Journal
Devoted to English Language and Literature)
Stephen Oladayo Oladokun was born into the family of late Pa and late Mrs James Oladokun in Igbeti, Olorunsogo Local Government Area, Oyo State. Nigeria. He obtained BA (Ed) in English at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Kaduna State. Nigeria. He has taught in many schools at elementary and secondary levels and has won award of the Most Innovative Staff for three consecutive times at Queenview Academy Minna, Niger State where he raised from a classroom tutor to the currently Principal of the school. He is the founder of Delight Institute, an organization which seeks for better methodologies in teaching and learning oral English. He has written and directed several playlets: Petals and Gardeners, The Master's Song, Gift, and Education in this Generation. He is one of the ambassadors for World Literary Foundation's 2020 program and also a member of Hilltop Creative Foundation in Minna, Niger State. Nigeria. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. A Gift from China
Death in the air,
A gift from china
Or grave arrest
Order by Corona
I cough, mother flees
I sneeze, father runs
Now, I walk like masquerade
My ears in Italy
my eyes in Russia
I know your might
Few meters away from lovers
Leg greetings, a moral act,
Your handiwork, Mr Corona
This one life I got
It is not yours to take
Wind traveller, agent of death.
2. Dinner with Lucifer
On a dinner in hell with Lucifer
Shield of faith, I fastened very high
Knowing hell as cool as aquifer
Thrice, heart spoke, but to conifer
'Sip me a little', called Lucifer's eye
On a dinner in hell with Lucifer
My tentacles, too strong to quaver
So I thought, till my soul was set on fire
And my burnt hair sainted like fresh aquifer.
There wasn't room to decipher.
There wasn't time for Lord's prayer
On a dinner in hell with Lucifer.
I pondered, 'Devil is a crucifer'
But Lucifer was too truthful to lie.
He gave me nail & voice & said, 'crucify'.
Twice, I should 've stopped being a- bluffer
For faith was no bird to fly.
I wished I were wise like Junifer.
No water but blood on a dinner with Lucifer.
I know not all
I know that I know;
Heart lingers to heart a lone heart
Yet Love loves not Beloved
And two Wises can't drive in marriage.
Wisdom gets a wise man killed
Foolishness drowns a fool
Yet lukewarmness is the worst of them all.
If a man closes not his eyes to see,
He is willing to fall in broad day light.
4. My Motherland
I opened my eyes that very day
At my stepmother’s laps
With warmth and affection
I was wrapped in my father’s cloth.
I looked around and saw heads like water.
A sense of belonging came to me
I leaped for joy in my heavenly language
But they could not understand
So I remained mute and they all laughed.
Imitation began in me
I joined the mammoth of children around
In vertical, horizontal and even circle
We sang and ran joyfully
In our innocent nakedness
As elders sat to play backgammon
A path was shown to us.
In myth, folklore and legendries.
We were cajoled to the ancient way.
This mystery of buccaneers still flows in my blood.
How can I forget this kindness?
How can I forget this motherly affection?
How can I forget that sweet voice
That sang me lullaby from childhood?
How can I forget the land that nurtured me?
How can I forget her prairie
That produces corn, yam, cassava…?
How can her love elude my heart?
The mightiest among her mates!
How awesome to have as a mother?
You are sanctuary of peace.
Cold weather tabernacles over you.
You feed hungry souls with kindness
And angry souls find peace in you.
Aliens settle in your loving heart
And erect abode for their offspring
Children of Igbeti,
Listen to my voice,
Do not forget the rhyme of our fathers’ song;
The song of peace they sang with their clumsy voice
Which was passed to us to add melody.
Wherever you are- home or away
Sing that song to all ears
Preach that gospel to all flesh
Teach that knowledge without counteract
Peace is our emblem
We must showcase it
It is our mission
Peace shall forever be upon our motherland.
5. A Dirge To My Father
At that moment
When trumpet was blew
To announce your season of transformation
Gong became mute
Dundun ceased to utter a word
Cymbal and tambouring became dump
Guitars’ and harps’ voices became clumsy.
The jovial sun became moody
Darkness overcame the great light
And rain started falling to soften the earth
In preparation for a journey home.
Mourners took their positions
In tremble, tenor, soprano and base
They proclaimed your departure in meticulous voices
'Cos life ceased to be a garden of roses.
We, the children of Pa James Ajala
Lost laughter to weeping
Our mirror fell into River Jordan
Our mirror was snatched from us.
We opened our mouths in awe
We lost lips to cover our teeth.
Why couldn’t we discern for long?
Why couldn’t oracle reveal this mystery?
Our father was lured to leave mansion for self-contain
He became worriless of worrisome in this vile earth.
Pa James Ajala, be relaxing in your lonely room
But do not close your eyes else you become a woman.