Monday, August 23, 2010

Nigerian

I’m trapped in my own skin,

In the essence of my own being,

The identity I disown defines me to the bone,

My thoughts are born of my upbringing,

My actions, indicators of the nature that I am proud of,

And ashamed of.

I do not need a calculator to tell you how many times,

I have contemplated what else I could be if I wasn’t Nigerian,

I can relax away the thickness of my hair,

But not the stubbornness of my culture,

Pretend the same greed doesn’t reside in my marrow,

While I envy the ease at which the white man lives,

How the seasons change and give new beginnings,

There’s no fall where I come from,

Just the pride of the proud as they trample on the humble,

The strength of a currency so low,

Its power slips by unchecked but not unnoticed.

Yet the reality remains,

If I could bleed the Nigerian out of me,

I would surely die unnoticed in another man’s land,

Fulfilling a stereotype recorded by a dead mans hand,

If I could extract the Nigerian from my being,

Then I would miss the wisdom of the world,

That life would presume it could teach me,

Lessons instilled in my mind before I was born,

The blessing and the curse,

I sometimes loathe the irony of my nationality.