In this piece simply titled Nigeria, Ironsi Tochukwu raises issues most Nigerians would like to stay away from. One might say he is venting his anger, one might say he’s just ranting. Please share your thoughts in this second article for the 30 days series.
“So you are going to read this, because it is young, and it is innocent, and it is crap and no one is going to figure how to say this about Nigeria.”
This is not a story. This is horseshit. This is a story of history written with blood of villains and heroes past. This is the Great Gatsby written in form of Schindler’s List. This is not relative. This is total. This is absolute. This is my version of events. This is a lie. This is a lie about the truth. Sorry Adichie boo, but this is a single story. This is a single story about a country of many stories .This is a story of a dying culture that became a mere stereotype; true but incomplete. This is a story of glory and sin to be taken with small sips of dry gin. This is not a song because there are troubling lungfuls of silence. This is not poetry because this story has no rhyme schemes or beautiful patterns. This is not prose because there are no interesting beginnings and climaxes or tragic ends in this story. This is not drama because to be or not be are not choices you get to make.
Nigeria requires no introduction.
Nigeria is the man with many funerals and no death.
Nigeria is the case of a failed murder victim that sleeps in fancy coffins. Nigeria is the inaccurate monologue of a dead scholar.
Nigeria is the man with many birthdays. Nigeria was born in 1914. Nigeria was born in 1960. Nigeria was born in 1970. Nigeria was born in 1999. Nigeria was born today.
Nigeria is expensive shit. Nigeria is the poor man who is signed to a commonwealth.
Nigeria is the calm unsure breeze of the early morning.
Nigeria is the dark night with flying witches. Nigeria is the dark blanket beneath those bright stars.
Nigeria is the colorful rainbow seen in black and bleached white.
Nigeria defies gravity and only goes up.
Nigeria is a hopeful transmission. Nigeria is of Monsters and Men. Nigeria is a waterfall made up of tears of joy and death. Nigeria is the crying dark skin under the flogging sun.
Nigeria is a confusing idea. Nigeria is the thing around your neck.
Nigeria is every writer’s imagination. Nigeria is every painter’s unfinished work. Nigeria is crude oil that will soon finish.
Nigeria is forced feminism and false patriotism.
Nigeria is the woman with beautiful scars. Nigeria is expired cement and imported rice.
Nigeria is a long joke about democracy.
Nigeria is the stolen nok heads and the ivory masks lying in French and British museums.
Nigeria is hearts in melanin and skins in collagen.
Nigeria is a failed system and yet a blameless people.
Nigeria is different tongues and languages.
Nigeria is fire divided by two long rivers.
“We used to look up in the sky and wonder at our place in the stars. Now, I just look down at worry about our place in this dirt”
Nigeria does not contribute to global warming.
Nigeria does not have a LGBT community.
Nigeria does not get to decide if the world goes to war.
Nigeria is not a stockpile of weapon grade uranium.
Nigeria is not made of cities with bright lights that never sleep.
Nigeria does not make big budget movies with double figure Oscar wins. Nigeria does not owe one trillion dollars.
Nigeria does not do plastic surgery and sex tapes.
Nigeria does not have secret agencies and whistleblowers. Nigeria is not controlled by secret societies and confusing new world orders. Nigeria does not have any U.F.O sightings and Watergate scandals.
Nigeria does not have witches and wizards who use wands with cool spells and do good deeds. Nigeria does not have tooth fairies who exchange broken teeth for kobos.
Nigeria does not do science fiction. Nigeria does not do television series about blue meth and law firms. Nigeria does not allow people to kiss in public and make out in parks. Nigeria does not let the bartender keep the change.
Nigeria does not have patents. Nigeria does not sue.
Nigeria is not Marxist-Leninist. Nigeria is not communist. Nigeria is not capitalist. Nigeria is not socialist. Nigeria cannot even spell laissez-faire.
Nigeria does not have people with Obsessive compulsive disorders and multiple person disorders.
Nigeria does not sign prenups. Nigeria does not let married women keep their names. Nigeria does not call parents by their first names.
Nigeria does not have a silicon valley. Nigeria does not attend comic con. Nigeria does not sniff crack with dollar bills. Nigeria does not sound like Coldplay or Rihanna. Nigeria is not fucked up!
Nigeria is a noun. Nigeria is the mask of freedom you wear to speak the truth.
Nigeria is a verb. Nigeria is what we pretend to do.
Nigeria is an adjective. Nigeria is that beautiful dark skinned girl.
Nigeria is perverted ideals and suicide bombers. Nigeria is missing young girls and people with incurable diseases. Nigeria is hungry people and their innocent NGO smiles.
Nigeria is OAPs with fake accents. Nigeria is thieves in agbadas and thugs in Tom Fords.
Nigeria has a dark skin problem.
Nigeria believes in a higher power solving all the problems.
Nigeria needs a new name.
Nigeria has a Nobel Prize in literature. Nigeria has an orange prize. Nigeria has a Pulitzer. Nigeria has a National book award. Nigeria has beautiful award rejection speeches. Nigeria is young amazing writers and celebrated old ones.
Nigeria is growing. Nigeria can work.
Nigeria believes both in unity and catchment areas at the same time.
Nigeria is funny. Nigeria is pure mouthfuls of laughter through brown teeth and dry tongues.
Nigeria is nothing and everything. Nigeria is a state of mind.
Nigeria is my country. Nigeria has beautiful people.
Nigeria is beautiful. Nigeria is me.
“It was a running splash of rust and gold-flung and scattered among seven hills like broken china in the sun”
You can follow this writer on twitter; @txchukwu
You can also read more of his works on his blog