Her boubou, soiled in her blood, one part of her face was in dire need of a hundred stitches...
She had only wanted to find her feet and her voice in her own house, but you felt your authority was threatened, your temper, stretched, and your wave, roughened. The piece of glass, shattered all over the sitting room; the upturned chairs, the television that lay in ruins, and the cross that dangled on the wall, are testaments of your manly dissatisfaction.
You wanted to drive the message further, not until you saw the blood come, that you drew back in fright, with so much disappointment in your eyes. Looking at the only surviving witness, the long mirror in the room; it said one thing: you looked more battered than your victim.
You could feel the guilt just by taking a good look at her, bent over as she whimpered like a run-away puppy. Her boubou, soiled in her blood, one part of her face was in dire need of a hundred stitches, and she looked undoubtedly shattered, beyond consolation. The white walls, would need a painter without a conscience, to conceal the taboo you have committed. Soji, your sins are unforgivable.
You drank from the secret wells of your wife’s best friend, and became more powerful than the gods of your forefathers. Nkiru only came a visiting; she needed a break from loneliness, and had come to your wife for refuge. You became the dutiful husband overnight, but a night changed the flow of the tide. Kate had gone for night vigil, leaving you alone with her best friend. You came back too late than usual, and scaled the sacred ram.
This was you twenty eight years ago. You watched as your father descended on your mother, heavily. Your watched helpless, not until the day your strong arm met that of your father’s weak rage. Your mother got up from the ashes, dusted herself, looked at you and said:
“Soji, enter the car. We are leaving.”
It never occurred to you why she had stayed all those while, and took the punches while she was the one that put food on the table. Was it simply love, lust or just fear.
The beatings started when your father comes home one day, looking too dejected from his normal self, looks at your mother and says:
“Ugomma, I just lost my job.”
Your mother from hence, hunched over the insatiable demands of running a household. Didn’t your father take to drinking and whoring? One day, you came back and met the neighbours; they were separating your mother from a woman that looked half torn; she had been caught on bed with your father who idly watched while your mother fought like a mad woman. It was from one fight to the other, until your mother decided not to chase flies for the cow that refused to help itself.
There was still quiet, but the guilt was too much. There was a lot she needed to know. You stormed out of the house, and left your wife, helpless as she was, and stormed out to be happy, among green bottles. You needed a listening ear, a confessor. You were after all, your father’s son.
That night, you did not come to drink like the rest, you came for confession, to purge yourself of your iniquities, because your sins were already piled up: you have not only been found guilty for embezzlement at the office, but Nkiru’s unborn child arrives in February.
Written by Udemezue, Oluoma,
Udemezue, Oluoma loves to read and write, you can catch her on email@example.com, oluomaudemezue on Instagram, and @Udemezueoluoma on Twitter.