Songs We Sing at Night by Adefolami Ademola

by Leslie Anne Mcilroy


only a master orator’s velvety voice
will perfectly execute the elocution
of these fragmented letters
that condenses into songs
the web of words that
reveals the gruesome moodiness of nights here
for, like lobes of kola nuts
mine breaks, into bits of incoherent smithereens.

this threnody, like sacrosanct dawn
opens into the throats of weary mothers
like songbirds, wailing obscenities into
the curtain of dusk
of the benevolent malevolence of fate
cast on the grimy helm of female destinies
where womanhood is a receptacle of
degradation.    

this song shrinks, becomes a scanty monody
that reveals the ghost-like apparition
of gaunt men in threadbare bodies
whitewashed by the sweats of penury
men who sold their lives-
like 20 pieces of silver-
to the hands of broken dreams
to wait, aimlessly-reenactment of godot-
while years crawl upon themselves
like aroused lovers.

it contracts now, rather repulsively-
into a dirge-that sorrowful,
tingling rhythm that sends shivers
down the thread spine of night-
for disillusioned children, who
sit, gloom-powdered-, groaning under the
ubiquitous cover of darkness
to wonder why hopes become
a foot mat to dilapidated dreams
why dreams are killed, too easily,
like light switches on the walls
of our convergence.

so we sit, all of us
each one escaping into the harsh reverie
of his failures-cum-disappointments
and steady our voices, lifelessly
into a symphony of resignation
to something much more bitter than fate
and cheer our nights, those ominous twilight
into the center stage of our existence
and wait, impatiently-
saul’s incarnates-
for the silent sneeze of sunrise
to brush away our night songs …


Photo of Adefolami Ademola

Photo of Adefolami Ademola

Adefolami Ademola is a writer, poet, social commentator and content writer. While a Theatre Arts student at the prestigious Lagos State University, Lagos, Nigeria, his bold writings exposed him to threats from lecturers and students, for exposing the ills of the society, mirroring the university. But he remained undaunted and was popular for his intellectual insouciance. A 2016 PIN (Poets in Nigeria) Poets’ Residency Fellow, his poem, “Memories, Regurgitated” made the Top Ten Shortlist in the 2016 edition of the Korea/Nigeria Cultural Poetry Fiesta. He is presently a Public Relations Executive at WNTCAPITAS Consulting, a new-age media and strategic communications brand.