Anyone who sees beauty and does not look at it will soon be poor. – Yoruba Proverb.
Last week, few of my course mates and I were walking to a class at the Faculty of Arts when we saw something that left us gasping for breath. I saw it first actually. The faculty of Arts had been transformed. The ugly flowers had been replaced with beautiful sculptures and beautiful yellow seats. Too much beauty in just one place. We had to pause and take random pictures. I cajoled them. Mini Photo-shoot.
Writing is not like painting where you add. It is not what you put on the canvas that the reader sees. Writing is more like a sculpture where you remove,
you eliminate in order to make the work visible. Even those pages you remove somehow remain.” – Elie Wiesel
Written on the stone is the Yoruba Proverb : ISE L’OGUN ISE (WORK IS THE ANTIDOTE OF POVERTY)
As you can see, the man is moulding a pot and the woman is making what I presume to be ADIRE clothing. Tie and dye.
We Africans are not lazy folks o… We believe in hard work. And this is the point where I say : THERE IS HARD WORK AND THERE IS SMART WORK.
ISE NI OGUN ISE (Written by J.F. Odunjo)
Translated by Pekun with further editing and rearrangement by Demola Olarewaju) Click here for full poem and translation
WORK IS THE ANTIDOTE TO POVERTY
Work is the antidote to poverty,
Apply yourself to work, my friend,
By working one attains greatness;
If one has no one to rely on,
That’s like being a loafer;
If one has no one to depend on,
One must apply himself to his occupation.
Anguish awaits the senseless child,
Tears await the child running here and there,
Play not with the morning, my friend,
Apply yourself to work – the day is going by.
Pluck the morning lily – cool, beautiful and bright,
Wait not till tomorrow – time passes quickly by.
I have decided to call her IYA. She reminds me of a story, a bed time story.
Ucheoma told me that story. She’s a fine story teller.
Once upon a time, in a quiet city, a woman fried akara by
the roadside. She often sold to her customers on credit
and would go from door to door each Saturday evening to
collect that which was owed her. She had a husband who
was the town’s mechanic. They seemed content in their
marriage except for occasional wranglings which was
common sight among many a couple.
One Saturday as she was beating down doors to claim
her debts by unwillingly debtors, her neighbours ran to
her, alarm written all over theirs faces.
“Come this very moment, and you shall catch your
husband in bed with your cousin.”
She paid them no heed as she kept at the doors of her
debtors. “Would you not come and see for yourself what
your husband is up to? what a husband snatcher your
cousin is?” they pressed on.
When she deigned to reply them she said,” You expect
me to leave my debtors and my source of livelihood and
shame my husband in the middle of an act? No way. You
can snatch my husband, but you cannot snatch my
MY YORUBA PEOPLE LOVE THEIR TALKING DRUMS.
The talking drum endures all matters without complaint.
(It is best to be stoically resilient.) – Yoruba Proverb.
Oun ti o ko oju si enikan, eyin ni o ko so elomiran bi ilu gangan. ( The thing that faces a man, also has its back against another like the Talking Drum.)
I know what your thinking now. “This boy is so tall”. Yes, he is really tall. His name is Afamefuna. And our substitute for A SELFIE STICK.
“Chimdinma, I think I like this one more. It seems so ALONE, lonely and rejected ” Chioma said to me.
Me, thinking out loud, this was me few months ago. But in the midst of loneliness and rejection, I FOUND MYSELF. I FOUND MYSELF.
Does everyone secretly feel lost? Sort of shoved into a corner alone?… Have you ever felt like your home wasn’t home anymore? If you were me, where would you run? – Shannon Hale, Forest Born
Loneliness as a situation can be corrected, but as a state of mind it is an incurable illness. – Vladimir Nabokov.
Perhaps we will not all be able to create a masterpiece like Michelangelo’s David or any of these beautiful sculptures in FACULTY OF ARTS but we can learn the art of writing from the process of sculpturing. Just hack away at the top layer until you see your story emerge, then move to the finer detail when that is in place. Of course, it takes time, but part of the fun of writing is the process and what we learn along the way.
This is the end of my picture story.
N/B: Law students in Nigeria are made to wear Black and White to school everyday, school uniforms, that’s what I call them. And so, if I had known I was going to take pictures with these beauties (lol), I probably would have DRESSED TO KILL AND BURY!
Who would have thought a blog post could emerge from this?!
N/B : This post is dedicated to all lovers of ART.
Location : University Of Ibadan, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria.
Faculty Of Arts.