ARt & OUTrage 4

Oh Come Let's Pray
BY JAHMAN ANIKULAPO
(Love notes to Bromillow Jack, the Minister)
Oh Spirit of our Being, you know that even as we kneel before you for this rite, we bleed from the wound of disgust and distress, we are bloodied from the hacking of Awodi who cannot lift the chick but would rather peck life out of our souls, we anguish on our endless spin in the turbine of hopelessness, we anger in our hapless state, we are battered by years of empty promises, shallow boasts and flatulent talks, we are shattered by the dislocations of our dreams to see our fortune and profile bettered by these men of meanful means whom we have been lucky to have in the driver's seat of our cultural house.
Oh Spirit of our Being, we hasten to confess that this prayer, we are about is not new to your divine hearing, that you have been acquainted with it for so many years, that you are indeed, bored stiff by our endless struggle, grumble and wobble, that you are in fact, tired of hearing same old dreams and hopes pushed into your majestic hearing over and over again. But we plead that you still hear these words of exaltation.
Oh Spirit of our Being, guide Baba Agba that the softer part of his heart will open wide to take in the timeless wisdom that only an apa will sell the fountain of his spiritual being to merchants of casino, lottery and the excessive taste of the golfer. Prod Baba Agba to wake up on the right side of Mama Skolie and declare in his romantic guttural voice “no way, we are no more selling”. Let him put to shame the peddlers of commerce who want to deprive us the source of our livelihood. Charge his voluptuous frame to action so he would call the famous Lagbaja or Tameduns or Lakasegbes behind this anti-intellect move. Inspire his crown head to live up to his name and give the oppressed victory, the distressed hope, the deprived fulfillment.
Oh Spirit of our Being, numb Baba Agba's memory to recall 27 years ago when he mounted global throne as host of eminent men of power and intellect during the famous cultural fiesta. Fill him with tonic of remembrance to realise his first claim to eminence and worldly grace was that fiesta of spiritual renaissance. Remind him, that this same house of culture that his selfish hawk aides want to pawn at altar of naira and kobo served his needs and desire at that world meet.
Oh Spirit of our Being, nudge Baba Agba to wake up September 14, the Creativity Day, on the joyful side and proclaim “Here, my gift to my un-rewarded toiling protectors of our father's wealth, the apex home of legacy is not befitting of the thieving claws of the anti-culture men”. Or let him be stirred awake from his vast waterbed on World Tourism Day, as he did last year and sing “Our culture is the only authentic wealth we have, we shall not undermine it through senseless profiteering”. Fill him with wisdom to consider so many other options available to bale out the depressed edifice at Iganmu.
Oh Spirit of our Being, this note in our prayer is most desired, so hearken to it in earnest. Prompt Baba Agba to rescue us from the claws of Mama Agbani, the matron into whose care he has dumped us like orphans of no status. Mollify him to deliver us from this abyss of hopelessness into which Mama Agbani has cast us. Let his eyes clear that dreams which for long had been dead in this house has been re-killed by the aging matron who shares passion for dark vision with the deadly man of yesteryears that basha-ed our collective being to almost in-existence. Inspire him to gird his flowing robe of empathy for our hapless case and throw Mama Agbani into the pond from where he picked her.
Oh Spirit of our Being, let Baba Agba realise that only men of vision, mission, passion, and intellection can hold the forte in the house of culture where dreamers, visionaries, missioners and intellectuals give meanings to the many mysteries of our checkered existence and lay foundations for our collective survival.
— Jahman Anikulapo

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