__After Chalk & Duster, a movie
we’re the lamps on which
the flame of education burns.
our wicks are weakened by men’s
frigidity. no palm-oil to fuel our passion.
or perhaps as the candle sticks?
you watch us ebb down
as decade mounts on decade
do you ever look back on
who lightens the obscure point
you once stepped your feet
and feebly walked your way to destiny?
dear sir! a man of the people
i see how your subtle speech
washed sense out of your countrymen’s brains
your sly hoe of sophistry
cultivating into people’s heart
& you hold the metropolis on lockdown
deny the teachers who taught
your old abecedarian, ABC
hello Mr calculus. remember
an old master took you through the ideation
of Bodmas, now you prance on
equations with compound-complex elements
waving flag of further maths mastery.
hey! poet laureate, i see your sleights
weave cryptic letters
remember the genesis of this exodus
when that smiling mistress
thought your hand to write the nursery rhymes
your Shakespearean brain could not discern?
i shall tell of one more grave injustice
the world of hypocrisy has snobbed
that the guardians of knowledge
are fed as paupers, with pittance,
when they should be fed at king’s palace.
OLAJUWON JOSEPH OLUMIDE is a three-time winner of the Brigitte Poirson Poetry Contest. A graduate of Mass communication. A teacher of English language and, Literature in English and Creative & Cultural Arts. He’s currently serving his father land in Kiru, Kano State.
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