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Poem and Stories

CHILDBIRTH By Uche Oniemola

She died yesterday in the rains
She died many moons ago on the streets
She died a thousand years ago in the farm
She died today in my arms.
It was my fault but it wasn’t my fault
I had just played with my wife
I didn’t realize I was putting her in danger.
I bought the needle and the cotton wool
I bought the cot and the pads
I had the names all ready, surely this time, it will be a son!
I bought the folic acid and the ugu
I bought her lace for the naming and the gin for my father
But I forgot to buy the doctor and the hospital
It started late at night and I woke my neighbor but his car had no fuel
It was the era of scarcity and he had to go to work the next day
I rang my uncle but his house was too far and the roads were flooded
I got a keke napep and it was a rough ride
My wife, she was tired but prayerful
But alas, the doctor, he was retired for the night
Besides, we have no facilities for such a case.
Try the private one down the road.
My wife, she was tired and before we could say abeg,
She was retired from life
She died yesterday in the rains
She died many moons ago on the streets
She died a thousand years ago in the farm
She died today in the hospital corridor.
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