The book that sung

Jess and I have plenty conversations, I do love him, more than I allow myself to admit and I have told him several times my feelings for him. He loves me too, that I know. But I do have anxiety issues and a bit of paranoia, It is because I know of these for a fact that I am able to keep them at bay.

But I found out that when it comes to the people and the things I love it becomes quite difficult to keep putting both my paranoia and anxiety issues at bay. Lets take for example the day I realized that I was finally and actually in love with Jess.

He had dropped me off at home, and on his way back home he realized that I had left my phone in his car, so he called my sister and asked to speak to me, and proposed that I meet him halfway for it.

I agreed and set off home, I stood at where I thought I heard him mention as the proposed place to wait for close to 3 hours. It was getting dark and I stood there with fear in my heart and I imagined every horrible scenario in my head, as to the reason he couldn’t make it to the rendezvous. I had a panic attack and was visibly shaking, then I realized, oh shit! I love him.

At the end, Jess was fine. we just missed up our meeting point and we both missed each other.

After that incident then began our conversations, and out of those conversations Jess made a funny comment on how he thinks that the only thing that could come between us is food. That made me laugh, I do love eating actually and Jess loves making food, so its a perfect arrangement for us. He thinks my love for food is enough to be a deal breaker if ever I needed a excuse to want out, I thought so too.

It was the book that sung, as well as a different circumstance that I foresee in the not so far future.

The book was about a man a black man who fell inlove with a white girl. This book was set in the year 2021, a progressive year, but with people of color facing the same challenges as before. I renamed it “the book that sung” because the words in the book, floated in my brain for months till I could make a song out of it.

Almost during the very beginning of our relationship Jess and I knew we were both traveling out to continue our studies. We didn’t count on our schools being in the same country, as well as just an hour and half away from each other, but it did. We do love the arrangement.

But I one day talked about going back home some day, after maybe working and stay abroad for a while, and Jess doesn’t seem to share the same idea. It is often not my way to continuously talk about an issue or raise arguments, so I made that issue slide.

At the very back of my mind, the issue still persist silently. There is always an ongoing war in my mind and it always rounds back to the book that sung. The black man. He was going through same turmoil after being racially profiled, I read that book with my heart, and whenever I walk around, be it in school or outside, I feel this imposter syndrome.

I do not belong, is what I tell myself and even a random person’s laughter or even stare seems to confirm my thoughts.

I walked in a shop to buy something just lastweek, I asked the man behind the counter if he had the item I was looking for, and he sort of waved me away withought actually listening to me. I did try to make light of the situation, but I couldn’t do that for long, I just kept remembering the book, the book that sung.

For the sake of Jess I am trying to like it here, I am boosting myself with enough confidence not to be bothered abut being the only black girl in a train, or bus, or place. But that doesn’t cancel out the urge to want to go back home one day, even if its after ten or twenty years. I want back to that which is familiar, comfortable and welcoming.

A black American who once visited Ghana during one of the December festivals geared towards promoting tourism, mentioned how walking around in the streets Accra felt liberating. Because there she is not seen as an African American. She is just another PERSON, going her way.

I have lived in such a liberation for a full 28years, it will take a lot for me to get used to this and I am sad. I hope it takes nothing from me, but I can only lie to myself for a short while.

Maybe, in a years time I will come back and refer to this article more certain, bolder and sure of myself.

Until then, this a little black girl’s way of survival in foreign land. She’s writing.

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Love sucks

By virtue of schooling I’m a Nima girl, went to St Kizito RC from class 2 to class 6. I had almost all my crushes in St Kizito and the most prominent of them was Precious.

He was a year ahead of me and I was so hopelessly “in love” with him that I couldn’t stand to be in the same place with him. Anytime I saw him my heart beat increased tenfold. I didn’t tell anyone about this not even my best friend as at that time (Margaret Ameyaw).

So it was approaching valentines’s day and I didn’t think anything of it, I mean which person at that age will be thinking about valentine’s day. But that very day I got to school and the first person I saw was Precious so handsome and smiling at me like somebody has told him that I had feelings for him.

Fast forward we closed from school and as usual I was waiting for my best friend (Margaret) to walk me to the station so I can pick up a car home, only to see Precious approaching me with something that looked like a card and a flower in his hand. I was shy, nervous, happy at this rate my heart beat was over working, he approached, smiled and handed over the card and flower to me and quickly walked away.

Herh!!! I didn’t know whether to open the card or not, go home and leave my best friend behind or not, walk back to Precious and give him back his gifts or not. I thought the perfect ending was for the earth to open up and swallow me because my face felt hot with a mixture of joy and embarrassment, this was was because some of my classmates were near by and had seen him hand over the gifts to me and had already started teasing me.

Margaret (my best friend) came out the classroom when she heard the teasing, I told her that we should go cause I wanted to go home but I hadnt still opened the card. Even on our way home my friends were still teasing and making kissing faces, singing my name along with that of Precious.

Suddenly Margaret (best friend) asked me if I had opened the card to read, I replied no and she asked me to at least open it. And I kid you not I will never forget this, I slowly opened the card to see “from Precious to Margaret Ameyaw, happy Valentine’s Day, I love you”. ❤️

Margaret Ameyaw was my best friend’s name.

Amy

Even though that is not her real name I thought I should use it. Not necessarily because I don’t want people to know her real name, because I doubt any reader of mine might know her. Amy with the beautiful hair and eyes, and a very wide smile which went on and on.

I don’t really remember when I officially met her, my memory could not stretch that far. But I do remember that in the beginning we were friends. She would spend days with my family and I at home, because she lived nearby and also her mom had to work on weekends.

Kids are fearless now that I think about it, we were told to never allow her go to sleep when she came around. We were suppose to entertain her with games, movies and conversation and we kind of never questioned that. Maybe our minds was clouded by the fact that we were given a “Carte Blanche”, whenever Amy was around to watch as much TV as we want, that we forgot to question such directives, or we just being kids. But we were soon to know.

Her mum had dropped her off per usual on Saturdays, we were happy to see her. We had gathered later on to watch TV and we realized that Amy was no where to be found. My sister walked into the bedroom only to find her sleeping ever soo soundly, we woke Amy up for a good 10mins and she never woke up.

An initial suspicion that she might have died in her sleep was quickly quenched when we realized that she was breathing, she just couldn’t wake up. We quickly went out to inform a grown up who was in this case my dad, he just happened to be home and before we told him what happened, the fear in our eyes betrayed us.

My dad called my mum, waited patiently for her to come and went inside the room were Amy was sleeping and started praying.

Amy came from a long line of fetish priestesses in a sense she was was marked for priestess hood even before she was born. Her mother refused and protested because she was a Christian and it worked for a while till she (Amy), mistakenly ate food that was met for the gods during a popular festival in Ghana called “Homowo”.

Homowo is a festival that is mainly celebrated in the southern part of Ghana by a group people popularly known as the GA’s. The celebration normally takes place in August and its a symbolization of when the ancestors won a victory over hunger. The word Homowo can be broken down into two syllable. “Homo” meaning hunger, and “Wo” is a hooting sound in the GA language.

During the festival there are songs, dances and a special type of food known as kpokpoi is prepared, eaten, and also thrown around by the various paramount chiefs “for the gods”.

Amy ate the food for the gods. She since then was marked by the gods as a wife for them, and since her mother refused to send her to the shrine to be officially inaugurated, the gods resorted to getting through to her whenever she sleeps.

As a child, I lapped this up. I didn’t understand what was going on but I knew that something was wrong with Amy and she became all better, when people prayed over her or she held a Bible to her while she slept.

Amy is married with two kids now. I don’t know remember when she got better, or when the gods the let her alone. But I am older now, I googled “A sickness that makes you sleep like the dead”, and it gave me Narcloepsy.

Was it Narcloepsy? The Gods?

I am just happy Amy is safe.

Beautiful Boy

You taunt me

But I would still like to flaunt you

Dark hooded eyes

Shadows fluttering like the wings of birds beneath those eyelashes

Who hurt you?

No

Don’t answer that

Who loved you?

But I guess you never intend to answer them anyway.

Not now

Not ever

Not to even to yourself

But I have seen the way you hide behind the cocoon of yourself

An image of

Nonchalance

An indifference attitude

They way you swagger in your tortured soul

Your restlessness in your wandering spirit

A carefree imp

An incorrigible sadist

Who hurt you?

Wait,

Who loved you?

I would like to unravel you

Peel away these shadows that lurk behind your eyes.

Strip you of your every masquerade mask you wear for every occasion

I would like to see you naked

Not naked in form

But of mind.

I want to see your defenses down

I want you to lower your guard

Can you?

And you still haven’t answered my question

Who hurt you?

Oh! Shoot

I meant who loved you?

The man

I saw a man.

I wish I could say in my dreams.

That way he would be mine and mine only.

But no.

He was real.

Every delicious dark chocolate skin of his was real.

His walk

His look.

He gestured.

I was transfixed.

His smile.

His eyes.

He looked my way.

I was dumbstruck.

I saw a man.

I mistook him for a girl.

He was beautiful.

Every movement of his body oozed sensuality.

Like a prime feline it seems as if every movement of his was calculated.

Just a measure of smile.

Not too wide.

Not too close.

Just a slight movement of his arm

Not too wide.

Not too close.

Just a slow glance at my way.

Not too obvious.

But a registration of “yes! I saw you!

I saw a man.

Feets bare on the ground.

Trousers somewhere mid legs.

Brown shirt with an Afro hair.

He was simple.

I should not have noticed him.

But he had this flair around him.

This energy.

Animalistic.

I was soo caught up I forgot to look away.

I saw a man.

He took the mic and sang.

He gave me a cheeky look.

A cheeky smile.

And a stare created from the hottest pit of hell.

It was an inferno!!!!

It burned!!!

I saw a man.

But I doubt if he even noticed me.

How are you?

I need a second to gather my thoughts,

If given an hour I can write a book.

My answer if am able to say it

Will be one full of drudgery, emotions, pent up feelings revealing secrets.

But I do not have an hour

Or minute

What I have is now.

I am fine.

Caught up

I hear of things I would love to talk about

I listen to words I would love to say it back

Sometimes

I do manage my words enough to convey my message

Most times

I feel so choked up with those words I barely manage to cough it up.

I’m I sad?

What is sadness? a sudden uncontrollable sense of helplessness? If that, then yes!

But I’m fine if you ask.

I’m happy if you want.

I’m naughty if you are in the mood.

You see I want to spare you all the details

Its as gory as you can imagine

Feeling of incompleteness

A tingle spiraling out of control

As elusive as an orgasm (among other things)

I made you smile, didn’t I?

But then that wasn’t my true intent

I wanted you to see

See what I see

Feel what I feel

The raging storms

Heart beating

The thoughts

Head swarming

Drop a feet in my shoe and move a step

Press in the soles and take a breathe

Can you feel that?

Overwhelming?

Suffocating?

Choking?

Are you choked yet?

You will be fine

I will be fine

Allergies

I am allergic

Or maybe nauseated

By this thing called love.

You may not agree

But trust me,

I don’t care.

I think love is full of shit

Just dig me a grave

I will snuggle with the ants

And wallow in their love bites.

I am allergic

Or maybe skeptical

About love stories and happily ever after’s.

You see, I think the dwarfs in Snow White were a bunch of gay men.

And Prince Charming in Cinderella was a weak ass man, who couldn’t catch up to a lady running away in heels.

I am allergic

And also sympathetic

To the deeds done by men all in the name of love,

Only to find out that it was never reciprocated in the first place.

I am allergic

Not a fanatic

I still believe in love.

But not for me.

Untitled

The strings of a bow are tied to my nerves.

My mind is like open maize field

Filled with corn and yet so empty and sparse

Call my name

Did you call it twice?

No?

There was an echo

It rang in my head with a huge clanging noise

I can’t breath

“I will be fine, I will be fine”

There goes my mantra

A repeated phrase of sheer willfulness

Forced down my throat in an attempt to save me from self destruct

Is this a joke?

Am I a source of amusement for a power higher up?

Does he or she tickle themselves with my distress

And laugh at my pain?

A puppet

Pull a string here for pain

Pull a string there for distress

And so it goes

Each other day

“I will be fine, I will be fine”.

The little things in life.

Dad was going on retirement so we had many well wishers bringing gifts to the house. I remember very clearly how we got so many things and was even awed at the love people were showing.

Most of the gifts also came from people we went to church with, and there was one gift in particular that the name “Deaf ministry” was pasted broadly on, and I remember thinking at that time how a whole ministry could give out such a small gift so it remained unwrapped(I was in charge of unwrapping).

The next morning, my dad and I decided to take coffee. He’s a diabetic and has been cautioned to take only the decaf one, so he had already injected his insulin, I heated the water and 30mins after the injection he was ready take his coffee only for him to meet an empty decaf bottle.

As with diabetics, he started sweating and I needed to get him something real quick. I don’t know what prompted me to go and pick up the gift I refused to unwrap a day before but I did, and in it was a decaf coffee. And trust me, that was the most celebrated gift in the house.

Most times we chase after the big things, because we want big changes. Changes are subtle, they are silent and they come in small quantities. Let’s appreciate the little things in life.