My Bible Story: BA’ASMA’S DELIVERANCE #4

en06sep40c_youngShemsi stood at her balcony, looking out at the sea, vast and azure before her, a wide expanse of jeweled fluidity. It spoke to her. Everything spoke to her these days.

It had been 3 days since her last visit to Janus. It was no longer news that this Yeshua, the Nazarene was in the region of Decapolis. If reports were to be believed, he had fed over four thousand men just a few days earlier. (more…)

Yaky Ink-spired: DAYDREAM

I am supposed to be working out a plot difficulty, but for some reason I can only daydream.

My dream watch is a TAGHeuer. Efficient, superior, Swiss manufacture. With a cracked face (star-burst pattern across the glass) with that asymmetric refraction that multiplies numbers. The straps are worn and frayed, with white thread tasseling out. The loops holding the strap in place are gone and I’ve got rubber-band wound around the strap in replacement.

My dream car should have enough character to get into a scrape early in its relationship with me. Just something not too major, like a dented fender or a scratch on the side. In fact, I would relish the experience of having a Keke driver scrape me in traffic. I would want to see him jump out of his tricycle, emitting fear in almost visible distress waves, about to fall salaam in apology, and then I’ll say, magnanimously, “Oh, never mind that. Are you alright yourself—no hurt?” while pumping internal fists like “Mission accomplished!” I know he’d do a double take, and some really clever ones might try to pin the blame on me if they feel they can get away with it. I would also not mind it giving me trouble in the morning occasionally so I’ll have to take time off my schedule and take it to the mechanic’s. (more…)

My Bible Story: BA’ASMA’S DELIVERANCE #3

Read former episodes of Ba’asma’s Deliverance here: (Episode 1 AND Episode 2)

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en06sep40c_young“I need more of that milk,” Shemsi said, her tone resolute.

Janus Marcellus lay on his pallet, his arms behind his head as he watched her dress. A slow smile appeared on his lips.

“Ah…I see we have come to the part where you get your reward for…services rendered.”

Shemsi continued to dress, her face remaining blank. She had learned to steel herself during their encounters and was accustomed to his barbs leveled at her. She drew her cloak around herself and turned to face him, her eyes fixed on his, unwavering.

“You are a man of honour, my lord. Surely you would not begrudge me this small token.” (more…)

Tobe Writes: MUCH ADO ABOUT WHITE WEDDINGS

On February 14, I felt one of the best ways I should unwind from the love euphoria serenading the world was to go for a special valentine church program. Well, I did go, hoping to hear some new pep talk on love. Suffice it to say I didn’t hear anything new, but, the minister said something that got my ears up. Prior to this church program, I had been battling inwardly on the rationale of white weddings and the whole extravaganza attached to these nuptials. I have always wanted to know between the church and traditional weddings, which was more important, or should I say, which the real wedding was.

This inner battle led me to ask some married people which of the two forms of wedding was the real wedding, or which was the significance that a marriage had begun. Most of the answers I received validated the dowry, that once a dowry is paid to the bride’s parents, the lady in question automatically becomes the groom’s wife. Then I fired my second question: Then why the white wedding since the bride has become the groom’s wife? They would say something like: you know GOD needs to bless the marriage, that’s why we went to the church. This answer made me ask, so GOD does not bless a marriage until the couple performs the white wedding? At this point, most of my interviewees would pause, and say something like, I don’t know but I know you need the blessing of your pastor. (more…)

OTHER SIDE OF THE COIN (The B.O. Okoji Experiences: Episode 9)

I stood in the dark, dingy cell – a tiny space that was drenched with the smell of urine, foul air and sweaty bodies – and I was clad in my native trousers, which was turned inside out with my singlet. I could hear one of the suspects preaching the word of God in a thin soft voice. I looked out through the single window that faced the outside, while rubbing my left cheek. It still stung from the hot slap I got earlier from the aboki Mopol. I squinted at the stars dotting the night sky, tried counting them, anything to take my mind off my predicament. I had being brought in and detained along with nineteen others, all of us so-called suspects. The arrest had been swift, and I felt my mind beset with bewilderment over how I landed myself in this mess.

EARLIER ON . . .

A purported robbery had taken place forty five minutes earlier in my neighbourhood. The word on the street was that a top government official of Lagos State had being robbed and shot at gunpoint. The man had been a regular nocturnal visitor of a brown duplex down the road occupied by a mulatto chick, obviously his mistress. As a result of the violent act, the OP MESA and NPF security operatives were out in full force, sweeping down on my area and picking questionable characters from the streets. There was no room for explanations or ‘Abeg officer…’ or any cause to identify oneself as the arrests were made. (more…)

Tobe Writes: THE MATHEMATICS OF LOVE

FOREWORD: What you are about to read is a figment of my musing. It should not be seen as pedagogy or as a philosophy. Even if it has to been seen as a philosophy, it is at best speculative philosophy not analytic or prescriptive. Though I have an inner witness to the validity of my postulation, however, I do not believe it is conclusive or cast in stone. Having said this, it is noteworthy to clarify that love in this piece is used mainly to denote relationship, the act of being in a relationship.

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As a young man, I have been in myriad relationships. As at the last count, I have been in close to ten relationships. Nevertheless, I still believe my experience does not guarantee me the undisputable authority to write on this auspicious but complex issue. But, as a writer and a social observer, it is expected of me to pen my musing.

For starters, I have always been interested in having an in-depth understanding of the missing rib mystery. This interest of mine got me attracted to any book that elucidated on how to find my better half. Some of these books were helpful, while some were just another book. However, I feel I have learnt more from my experience than from all the books I have read on relationships. My experience has led me to form a theory of love, this theory is what I have termed the Mathematics of Love. (more…)

My Bible Story: BA’ASMA’S DELIVERANCE #2

en06sep40c_youngShemsi pushed a lock of hair away from her face; a few strands sticking to the sides with sweat as she breathed in air made heavy by the evaporation from the Mediterranean Sea. It was another sweltering day on the port in Sidon, with the heat from the noonday sun bearing down upon all who dared to venture out on such a day. Shemsi grit her teeth and squinted, her eyes on the good being off-loaded from the ship by sweaty, muscled slaves. She rubbed the linen- covered scratches on forearm absent mindedly.

The four years after Baarak’s death had seen his fortune swell, with Shemsi being known around Sidon as a shrewd and calculating business woman, dealing in fine spices, linen, spun silk and fine jewelry brought from as far as Egypt. Rumour had it she could tell if an entire consignment of spices had gone stale by inhaling the top of the barrels. (more…)

Toby Writes: IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF MY FOREBEARS

After so much controversy which my last week’s article generated, as several people called for my head for daring to advocate that democracy should be discarded as a form of government in Nigeria, I feel it’s expedient to take my supposition a bit further. Most times a sizeable number of people endure abuse because they believe they do not have a better choice if they leave the comfort zone of their oppressors. However, history has proven over and over again that there is always a better island if one is willing to risk leaving the succor of the shore.

Therefore, I strongly believe that, whilst the rest of the world (most nations) are under one form of constitutional democracy – be it Parliamentary Democracy, Presidential Democracy or Communist Democracy – it will be politically unfair to believe that any nation that is not governed by any of these forms is headed for the rocks. I do not believe that the list of better forms of government is exhaustive once we leave the periphery of these democratic forms. To me, if Jesus tarries, I believe better forms of government will always suffice and efface as far as the principle of Changing Men in a Changing World remains.    (more…)

Yaky Ink-spired: HEAVEN – CASTLES IN AIR?

Forgive me, Father; I know what I do, what I construe

I might not go about it the right way, but my heart is true. —the Yakadude.

Boredom is the fear of not having enough diversions for your mind, diversions to remove it from its endless, restless searching into the nature of reality. Boredom is the disconcerting feeling you get when the veil of distraction is lifted and you try to avoid staring into the sheer abyss of clear perception. I found out just how much when I was younger.

I was seven. We were latchkey kids and lived in a three bedroom apartment—we had so much time in our hands with very few things to occupy ourselves with. We had very few toys, no VCR (all the TV we watched started when NTA began transmission by 4pm), a lean library (at least, books that would interest me; having read all the non-boring, story-oriented parts of the Bible several times, and our story books also). It became dreary, bleak sometimes, wading through the viscous, ennui-choked layers of time. (more…)

My Bible Story: BA’ASMA’S DELIVERANCE #1

Sifa is back with another series – The Bible Stories series. If you loved The Heart Of A King series, you will absolutely enjoy what’s coming to you. Here’s the first story’s episode. Read and Enjoy.

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BA’ASMA’S DELIVERANCE #1

en06sep40c_youngShemsi’s head flipped up as she startled at the sound of the crash coming from the central area of her palatial home. Muffled oaths could be heard echoing off the cool tile walls, and then silence. Then . . . then the eerie singing – Ba’asma’s voice that was not really her voice. Shemsi sighed even as the hairs on the back of her neck stood up. It was beginning again. And to make things worse, Ba’asma was singing that song again. (more…)

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