Bolami lawal

Fingers Are Not Equal

We have sold our wrappers
To buy 'garri'
Our neighbours sold a piece of land
To buy a diamond ring

We came back from the farm
From where we worked our fingers torn
Our neighbours at the 'Bananas'
Came back from the 'Bahamas'
Their legs worn out from overdosed shopping

They say: fingers are not equal

We rolled on our backs
As we slept on our tattered mats
Soaked from the opening
Of a licking roof
Our neighbours tossed in the comfort
Of their customised beds
A sleep in a water mattress
Is like a taste of heaven

They say: fingers are not equal

We walked miles to the market
With our wretched legs
The neighbours rode down the street
With their tinted 'limo'

They say: fingers are not equal

'Kekere ekun was a boy;
Now he wishes to take a wife
What we hear is the same old saying
Fingers are not equal

And so i asked;
When will these unequal fingers take turns?
So that our neighbours
May walk in our shoes,
That the poor may have the taste of a roasted turkey;
Is it when the hen grows teeth?
Or when hunger finally wrecks the body of the weak
And their discarded bones rot in uncemented tombs!

Poem Submitted: Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Poem Edited: Monday, August 20, 2012

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Comments about Fingers Are Not Equal by Bolami lawal

  • Veeraiyah Subbulakshmi (8/7/2012 10:52:00 PM)

    Our rich neighbors need not end up as poor, but we have to rise to their standard, then each finger has a specific function. well written poem comparing the two different sides of life.. Good!

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