They say that the old die, at least that is what I was told.
When I was young,
Before I grew old,
I told mama I would make her proud,
I told papa I would touch the clouds,
I had my drafts,
They had their plans.
In warm embrace and streaming tears,
they released me into the world,
With as much blessings as their hand could conceive.
I wish they only told me early enough
that the spade man would come for me.

In this world I was released into,
The spade man taught me to bear pain,
The spade man taught me to love fear,
The spade man told me to hush!
As long as the sun rose and fell,
My story, I could not tell.
Only if I knew;
if time was not too fast,
If date, not unpredictable,
If chance, not chanced,
I would have seen the spade man digging.

The spade man told me to hush,
I said no!
He or maybe she, told me to love fear,
My body though weak put a pound of strength,
I thought with it I could keep the spade man away.
He told me to bear pain,
How could I at 12 understand such game.
They say you didn't speak up,
But I did!
Ask the sun and the moon, they knew my plight,
Nature may even tell it better.
I fought, I tried, I was just not strong enough,
I never knew the young also die.

This time, the sun rose,
I did not see it fall, my story I could not tell;
My shrivelled legs failed,
My heart ached,
My face bruised,
My joints pained,
My dreams were gone,
My drafts were torn,

Who shall touch the clouds for papa?
Who shall make mama proud?
On whom shall I bestow this this enormous task I thought I could bear?
Say farewell to my family, they've lost a favourite child,
Send my greetings to the Delta people, they've lost a son,
Send more greetings to the south, their lush soil has swallowed their own,
Send a kiss to Nigeria, one from her loins departs,
Send the world a letter of my demise, make sure you write;
it is one of those cases of an abused child, maybe she will handle it seriously this time!

And now, as I slumber, an eternal one...
I wish I could reach out to that spade man called death,
I would strangle him with my bare hands,
With the innocency of an infant,
I would push him down into the pit he digs.
With the frailty of a child,
I would cover you up with soil and stones,
Ashes and dead flowers.
With tears in my eyes...
I will confess
"I cannot hush, death, I cannot hush!"