Feature: A silent whisper in the land of nobody - 4

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 Ahem! That even reminded me, you used to tell me I have a huge potential. You even went ahead to say it is as big as mountain Afajato and truly, like onion, it's peeling itself one after the other. It's true. I'm now more than a 14th century archaeological artefact recovered from sterile layer of the Maamaniland and polished by one Nandom Professor; adored by the people in Nkrumahland; catalogued with indelible pencil from the politics department of the school at Gamashie land; and placed in a saintly place called museum located at the institute of African archives--A special TALENT.

I'm treated more cautiously than the relics of Egyptian hieroglyphs. But I'm also gaining ground little by little. You know I'm good at carpentry. You praised that always. Because of this I replaced your brother's name with yours as my surname. The day I told you that I've replaced your name with my biological father's name, you laughed and said I should only add it as my middle name but not replacing it. You express your happiness and your delight to be associated with me. Yes! 

I will soon tell you what social media, the famous Facebook and it's siblings had done to my name. But before then, let me tell how our country is treating carpenters. Now our country is heading towards hands-on-craft. Our education is reprogrammed to prioritize the un-prioritized. So, our craft is gradually being recognized though it's given a new name. It's new name is TVET. Just like the new name given to carpentry, Facebook also gives us new names.

You know Sadia's elder sister called Salimata. The one who has big rounded eyes and a pointed nose like an Italian is now known on Facebook as Selma. Your own granddaughter Barikisu is known as Bilkis. Even these are not anything yet. A lot of people have different identities from their real self. Facebook is the new 'ish.' Can you still remember Sahadatu? The bicycle fitter's daughter is know called queen Sass. Such a beautiful name for that ugly girl. Anyways, she's no longer ugly. She's now known what's up. She even earns a lot of praise from her fans on Facebook. I don't know how you would've categorized them but we can definitely say it is IDENTITY CRISIS.

Everybody likes praises. Whenever my capabilities were mentioned by anyone, your expressive face was built in blocks of joy, especially your chin often looks more pronounced and more pointed with your scanty beard waving at the wind hovering around you. It was always a beautiful scene. However, you were always tauting my potentials but you never talked of yours. I had always wanted to ask you. But your anger wasn't a pleasant one. No one dreaded it. It was only your younger brother, Mba Adamu Carpenter, who could suppress it against your wish. 

Even with that it was because of what you did to your wife. The day he caught you beating Mma Kande in your little bedroom because she refused to cave in when you demanded a hot afternoon sex. This one is not to provoke your anger but I still wonder why you wanted sex so much that even in a very hot afternoon under the burning sun of the north you still demanded sex. It's not my portion to ask you this. I've heard from sources that you used to give her several lashes whenever she refused you sex. I don't know if that is also true but if indeed it is true, then you were committing sin we now called  DOMESTIC ABUSE. Yes! It was. It was a problem and it has become a topical issue in Ghana.

I can also remember the day that Kutuma, your younger sister, was lamenting why 'death' often comes for the younger ones while leaving the elderly and you came out of room so agitated with what she said. I know you remember this day correctly. You took all of us to the cleaners. Even including your immediate younger sister, Kutuma. You even asked her to always stay at her husbands home if she doesn't have anything meaningful to do at our place. I know you didn't like the idea of copout. Just like your younger brother, Abukari who doesn't like the slightest mention of snakes. We could discuss anything but snakes and copout in your presence because of your anger.

I couldn't ask you of your own potential too. Your anger was insurmountable. Yes! It was. Just like the apollo (glaucoma) rendering Kutuma blind. She till suffers it. Even recently she was struck by apollo again and she's admitted at Wa Regional Hospital. We all feared it. But this is the time to either eliminate it or embrace it. I could remember whenever any big name was mentioned to you, you say he was your small boy. Among all the people I ever mentioned, you've only accepted one person to be older than you and he was Mba Nuamai--the man who lived across three centuries. He was the only one. Just him alone. When the famous Kwame Nkrumah was mentioned, you said he was a small boy. 

When the Red army commander of June 4th was mentioned, you said he was your toddler. Even the northern talismen of SK Dombo, Imoro Egala, BK Adama, and Jatoe Kaleo was not spared your "small boyship." It got to an extent that I was even afraid and have to stop asking. I was afraid that it could get to the point that if I mention your own father, you might say "if he wasn't the one who gave birth to you, you would've claimed he was your 'small boy' too." I want to know now, were you as old as King Mertusalla or Nebuchadnezzar? And how come you didn't develop Maamaniland to look like the ancient BENIN KINGDOM, huh!

Let me preserve the sanity by not going that far as you elders often tell us, if you press the anus too much, your results will be faecal. I don't want to see faecal, so I stopped. If you are as old and wise as you often claim, why didn't you fight to liberate this land like Nkrumah, or JB Danquah or be a pioneer like Kobina Sakyi, or John Mensah Sarbah, or JJ--the Red army commander. Well! The red army commander joined the copout family. He was said to have developed heart complications though he was recovering from what the whole world is battling from. What the world called a pandemic. The human being that couldn't be killed by a gun or bomb or any mortal was killed heart attack. These are nothing than just particles as small as VIRUSES.

JJ is now history. A history to be studied by the younger generation. He's now at par with Nkrumah and JB Danquah. All claiming ownership of the land. So who is supreme? I think your wisdom is needed here. You've traded in salt from Daboya, Saltpond and several other salt producing towns. But why didn't you also claim ownership of the land in your name if indeed they were your "small boys." Can you imagine how I would've been feeling right now or also fighting the sons and daughters of Nkrumah or Danquah over who liberated Ghana or who did what in this country but the only thing you left us is they were your "SMALL BOYS." 

Aha! And who knows that, or will write that in history books or even mention that on TV. But I'm happy you left us one legacy which always helps me decide whenever the Nkrumahs and Danquahs are fighting over who owns this land. Calling this land "Nkrumahland" alone was enough. At least I'm not as lost as those people who neither had a clue or guidance as to who did what and when. Let them continue to debate on who owns Ghana. The saddest aspect is that they don't only claim ownership of the country but they also steal all the resources in the country to themselves. Maybe you've never heard of GRAFT before. And this is it.

I know you will not be happy to hear this too. I've detoured from our ways. I have decided to be a scribe. In the layman's words, they call it Writer. This is my newest discovery; another peeling of the onion. The pen is my hammer now, its ink is the nail that binds the pieces together and the paper is the wood that shaped up the module. You would've wanted me to be a good officer, wearing suit everyday to a room full of papers and my spectacle hanging halfway on my nose like the  posture of the colonial magistrate who adjudicated your salt case in the 1920s at Saltpond Circuit Court. 

You know these people are the biggest thieves in our era. If you were here, I know you would've avowed to report them to the toothless police, who can't even rescue kidnapped persons now. They have no guts against these powerful thieves. You know how powerful the Red Commander was-- atlest if no body knew, you should know better. You remember when you and your younger brother, Mba Adamu Carpenter were whisked away by his hounds for two weeks and only God knows what happened to you; all the name of fighting graft. But even him, his best intervention was only lamenting and belling hands in secrecy. 

This is the enormousness of these robbers in suit. To save our conversation, let's allow the space and talk about other things. I know you wouldn't understand why I want to skip this area. Now, even though we are still living in the era of "talk some and let me talk," (what the whiteman called Democracy), this area is untouchable. The bigman you once eulogize as a perfect gentleman has resigned from post when he was positioned to fight the robbers in suit. He couldn't. So I still wants to remain a Ghanaian and not a Burkinabe before sunset. I know you will love its refined name; a nice name called CORRUPTION.

After your copout, a question has been bothering my small mind for some time now. I know some of your brothers who are still with us will not want to hear it. But I will ask anyways. Why is it that all your siblings at Wa are dead, leaving the obuasi, and kumasi Monks of your family. The last time, Obuasi man was seriously sick but refuse any attempt to be sent to Wa for treatment and surprisingly, he is still with us. No copout. As for the Kumasi one, I only saw him once at the copout party of your wife, and two days after, you know what he does too well better than any of us, he had vanished into the untraceable corners of Kumasi. End of story to a successful RURAL-URBAN MIGRATION.

Funnily any of their children who liked coming to Wa never lives to see the shades of the sun crawl into its abode. Obuasiman's son, Amad, who came to Wa to attend school was taken away by a disease that swept many valuable lives at the school opposite the regional mortuary; the temporary house of the dead. Maybe the population of the dead was diminishing as a result of the dumsor that engulfed the nation during that time and they needed to replenish it, and by doing so, the dead ransacked the nearest populous community which happened to be the school. Now, we termed this as SUPERSTITION.

Unfortunately, Amad was lost to the quest of replenishment. You know Kumasiman's son, Keellan, the one who does painting of faces on bill boards and signpost, I mean his eldest son, who used to come for every program ranging from marriages to copout ceremonies, also died few days after one of his visit to Wa. As for his younger brother, Simbaway, I'm sure you don't know him; the one who went to whiteman land to study. He is back. He is back with a Fante lady. The record I had wanted to set in the family is broken by him.

I know Aisha's mother was a Fante. But you never married her. So we can't add that into the book of records. Simbaway too, like Kumasiman, don't want to hear of the name of Maamaniland. So he is in the eulogized part of Nkrumahland, Gamashieland. So what is causing your siblings at Wa to copout early than those in different lands? As I told you earlier, I'm afraid. Let's don't engage our long standing argument of differentiating between metaphor and metamorphosis. I need answers. No long talks. 

You know the saying that the sun never set on a cloudy evening. It disappears with the formation of the clouds. And that's the end of it. Don't say I've not told you. Our world is a weird and crazy one. This world as it stands without shock absorbers, will die of herculean shocks. Extend my greetings to my grandmas. Tell them I love them. Ive only told you a gist of our world. Even though I told you I'm a scribe, but I'm still a baby scribe, and if you want a full picturesque of our world, then you've to wait until I mature in the next script. But for now you need to manage with this.


By Al LATIF Kambo-Naa

Read Also: A silent whisper in the land of nobody - 3

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