Saturday, 28 June 2014


Something about riding in a public bus in Lagos.
This isn’t fiction. Nigerians are this annoying.
The BRT bus. 7:17AM. 27/6/14.
It’s raining heavily as my family driver pulls into the parking lot opposite the BRT bus station. I run out of the car just to notice the first bus is full. However there are two other buses parked behind it. Somehow I’m lazy to bring out my umbrella and struggle to open it but there’s this young man with a big umbrella who comes to stand close to me. I smile in gratitude. The second bus drives forward and we both get in. I pay for my ticket and he pays for his. The bus is still empty so I go around searching for a comfortable seat. I only notice the young man is still following me when he points out seats for us. I shake my head and tell him I do not like those seats. Somehow I’m praying he would leave me alone and go and seat somewhere else.  So I finally get a seat I think I’m comfortable with and the young man who had been hovering all this time comes to seat beside me.
This is the problem I have with people. They share an experience with you and then they think it’s enough to make them familiar with you. One time a guy that sat beside me told me I looked familiar. I had never seen the man in my life. He laughed his stupidly shameless laugh and said he was joking. That he just wanted me to give away stuff about myself. That he just wanted to know me. I was too furious to reply. There was another guy who sat beside me once and the next time I saw him in front of me on the BRT line he paid for my BRT fare without even offering to do so. I insisted he take his money but he refused. Just to sit beside me and make small talk and then ask me for my twitter handle because he noticed my twitter was open on my phone. One guy kept asking me why I refused to give him any information about me. Like it was the most normal thing to do to listen to a stranger in the bus telling you he likes you, give him your name, address and phone number, maybe email too and tell him your life story. LOL.
So this guy asks me if today is Friday, I say yes. He talks about how bad the traffic will be for a while. I put my head down and put my earphones in so he gets I don’t want to be disturbed. He doesn’t get it. He keeps trying to get my attention. I hear him saying excuse me but I pretend not to notice. He goes quiet thank God. Then I’m going through the pictures on my phone and this guy taps me. He asks me to show him my pictures. I’m too horrified. I shake my head violently saying no almost repeatedly. I put my head down again till he got off the bus.

Heartbreak is the worst loneliness of all.

What happens when those painfully beautiful love songs have a meaning, when you’ve given a face to the love they all sing about? What happens to your nights when he is no longer there to hold you? When you don’t feel his hard body on yours, his lips on your neck and his masculine musky smell is missing? You sleep now holding your pillow and on worse nights when sleep refuses you, you stay awake and remember. Memories never seem to leave, they linger around to mock you. You manage to survive days, then weeks. Some days are harder than others, sometimes it burns and you feel like ripping your own heart out of your chest so the hurting will stop. The growing hole, the emptiness increases. It’s worse when you think about it. “Why did he leave?” “Did he ever love me?” “Was I not enough?”. It’s silly you still remember how he would smile and his whole face would illuminate, lightening up your world.
So please don't say heartbreak is better than loneliness
It’s easy to miss what you never had.
To daydream of love. To know there is an emptiness . To remain hidden away deep within yourself for no one to hurt you. To wonder how someone could go on living without being loved, touched or desired. To cry to love songs every valentine’s day and remind yourself that you are as empty as you are alone.
Loneliness protects you.
What happens when you build your happiness in someone and the person leaves?
Yes, love is beautiful, but loneliness is good company.
 There’s certain strength in loneliness. You can be your own happiness.
It isn’t the best feeling to be lonely. But to be lonely for someone…that is something I wouldn’t wish for anyone.
This is one of the poems Damola sent me.
“Early Battle.”
I think there are varying degrees of sadness for everybody. But the kind that finds you, lying in bed, alone, save for the body pillow you clutch to, your own tangle of bones, skin and soul and a quilt from someone’s Grandma. The kind that hits right before you fall asleep, darkness warm and familiar, surrounding you as the final notes of an old love song play in your weary head, and the first tear falls, the kind that steals your breath away, and vice-grips your throat like a noose, and leaves you shivering beneath your quilt, the salt of your own eye-manufactured waterfall, settling on your skin, biting your bottom lip to remain quiet, and clinging to that body pillow, as you desperately imagine it to be the one person you’d be okay with seeing you like this; the one person that’s just out of reach. I think that kind, that is the loneliest kind of all.

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

17, June 2014.

"I don't know how to miss you", she began.
She sighed deeply.
"So don't leave me."

She didn't know how to make him understand. The distance between them was growing, lesser words each day and she lay awake at night wondering why she couldn't just call him and cry everything out. Tell him that sometimes she felt like she was choking and struggling to breathe and other times she wanted to give up and not fight anymore. How her whole world was crumbling and he is the only thing she is struggling to save. How she wanted him to talk to her about the reason for the anxiety she saw in his eyes. How she would lay awake and worry for him.

"What if I told you words weren't enough.
Or if I said that merely telling you that I'm lost whenever you go
Is just a bit of something way bigger.
That I cannot imagine a tomorrow without you."

She stood there staring at him with her heart in her helpless eyes.

She remembered how she set him apart.
The way she loved so much it hurt, cut her into two and shattered her inside.
How whenever he was around, she would sparkle and laugh and warmth flowed through her

She shivered now, as the waves of these emotions washed over her again.

How she wrapped her life around his light skin and his thick black afro. How she carved his name to her heart ignoring common reason. How her heart had refused to forget him even when she wanted to leave.  And each time her nights knew loneliness, her body would thirst after him.

She shifted fidgeted nervously with her fingers and feet, unable to explain her insane feelings.

How he told her he loved her and the words lingered around to haunt her even as she felt him leaving her.

She burst into tears.