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STORY : THE ELDERS DID NOTHING (short story by Kenny K'ore).

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

In our village the elders are like gods. And the more advanced in years a man is, the closer to the spirits our people deem him.

The elders father and mother everybody.

They take pride in the graying of hair; the more the gray, the more their words, for wisdom, are appraised.

So you will understand my utter dismay at what happend at the market today;

You know Udeme, the one who sells Ukazi?, yes! He was beating freckle faced Afam who hawks the best Ukwa in Urhobo market, for whatever reason I don't know. Although I suspect that Udeme was being his usual bullish self.

Udeme had landed three thunderous slaps already, as Afam, looking helpless, begs him saying, "abeg leave me, abeg....?!". There were three elders sitting on a bench beside the paraplegic old Uduezo, enjoying the gentle breeze, playing checkers and drinking palm wine....

They were momentarily stopped at their game to watch as Afam who was being manhandled mercilessly by Udeme feverishly begged to be relieved.

Nobody did anything to rescue Afam. I knew better than to get involved, I would hate to be Udeme's next victim, but the elders, the elders, they should do something, they can do something, or so I thought....

But they did nothing, rather they watched the drama gain momentum.

There was the devil in Udeme's eyes as he pummeled my friend, blows after blows.

Then something happened, Udeme cursed Afam's mother, it was all the provocation needed to raise the sleeping warrior in Afam.

From nowhere, the weaker boy hit Udeme in the groin area, and he fell on the ground with a heavy thud, holding his manhood, screaming in serious pain.

Now it was Afam's turn to dish out the blows, he was shedding tears, catarrh running off his nose, as he screams, "how dare you curse my mother", over and over, while he pummeled away.

It was at this time that the three elders who had been watching scampered to their feet to break the fight.

Ehhhnnn! I couldn't believe my eyes! Ehhhnnn! I must be dreaming, I thought.

When the Ukazi seller was beating Afam, the same men who did nothing wants to break the fight now the tide has suddenly turned.

Over my cowardly dead body, I thought.

I did all I could thereafter to stop the elders from stopping Afam; I lurched at their weak frames and made them stagger, I spat at their faces, you should have seen me, I even threw stones at them.

Yes I did everything.

And boy, did Afam teach Udeme a lesson.

I never knew bullies shed the bitterest tears.....

Ahhh! They say older men are better at interpreting the correct slope of a hill than the young, but these elders fall my hand today.

Wisdom doesn't always come with age o, and the breath of the almighty sometimes resides in the breasts of youth.

Ahhh, I was angry.... Ehhhnnn, they told you I'm a threat? I guess you heard right.

By Kenny Kore

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