Last night was topsy-turvy. I spoke to the love of my life. Beneath all the excitement I sensed the fear. The uncertainty. It was not helped in any way by the distance between us physically. On the surface not much had changed since we discovered we were romantically inclined towards each other (I did first). My litany is not to promise an error free love, but to show that love does not look for errors or doubts. To live in the moment every day and to falling in love with every breath.

I don’t know whether she sensed it too. I had my own fears. Would I be willing to commit over the distance? Will the lack of my physical presence force her into the arms of another? Would I look for “excitement” elsewhere to pass the time? I went to bed a confused young man. I was brimming with a love which threatened to leave me somewhere I’ve never been before.

When I woke up this morning I checked her last seen on WhatsApp. Then I checked her profile picture and status. I smiled and went through my morning rituals. In the shower I prayed. First for her, then for me. Then I prayed for my family and left my doubts in the bathroom. While I am afraid, my love is greater. For it is in the bible, I do not remember the chapter or verse but it says and I quote “No greater love than a man have for his friends that he lay down his life for them.” This passage does not always mean death. I realize it means love is bigger than yourself. I am not moving an inch. For the Lord will make me strong through love. Everything happens for a reason. It is not coincidence that two people separated by half a continent would fall in love with each other.

With each terrifying heartbeat, each devaluing fear, I am made stronger. In the face of our most pressing fear (ourselves) I declare that I love you. The best way I can show you is below.


I woke up this morning,

And I decided to skip work today,

I will do no paper mourning.

I sat before my mirror,

And stared at me,

A tweaked retrograde god,

And I decided to fall in love.

I watched the ants soldier on in unbroken ranks on my window sill,

And when they reached home their door doth did they seal.

I fell in love with the simplicity of their sophistication.

I stubbed my toe while sweeping the living room.

Rather than curse I marveled at my body’s emergency response.

And with a flourish I twirled my broom.

Whence I was done with my chores,

I stepped outside

And the sun kissed me good morning,

Loving rays from a white star.

And so it went

The day brooding,

The imperfection of food filling my stomach,

The minute cravings.

Near death

And as I lay down in bed today

I saw you.

With the high forehead,

And the hidden scars.

I saw you were afraid.

You did not have to speak it.

And in that moment

I loved you.

© Sena Kodjokuma 2014


Who is a friend?

Who is a friend?
A friend is one who:
Takes the last piece of fried yam and breaks it in half to share with you.

Decides to pay the fare when you’re going to town so you pay when coming back.

Goes to download the movie with your laptop when you tell him it’s in.

Asks you “what is this?” When everyone is gushing about your new painting.

Teaches you how to do alkayida ‘cos you have two left feet.

Borrows money from you even though you just took a loan from him.

Disappears when you finally manage to land the “movement” for the night.

Warns you when you’re about to go cliff diving without a parachute but follows anyway!

Tells you to “trap” the girl when she makes moves on you.

Punches you in the gut cos you’re being an asshole.

Calls you, insults you and hangs up, all for the fun of it.

Is always up for “one game p3” in FIFA but ends up skipping lectures.

Goes to steal the rice cooker when you manage to get uncooked beans.

Says “I’m not giving you away.” like a selfish child.

Comes to your house and drags you to play soccer in the rain.

Tells you your music is boring but sends it to his girl on whatsapp.

Cooks a big pot of Jollof and invites you over cos you’re broke.

Forgets your birthday and deliberately changes hers so you’ll forget some!

Will call you in the middle of a lecture for “scores”

Knows your password and posts dumb stuff on your page.

Picks your washing (including your sexy lingerie) cos he got to the hostel first before the rain storm set in.

Laughs after everyone else cos she just got the joke.

Supports your rival club and never ceases to make fun of you

Pulls a totally meaningless and absurd prank on you for absolutely no reason.

Gets you a card and a box of chocolates when you’re gnashing on Val’s day.

The one who seems to know everything.

Pulls you up after dirtying you in a fight with a smile and a curt “your da.”

Parties hard with you all weekend and wakes you up the night before a paper so you cram.

Does MTN pay for me to call you.

A friend is your roof on the rainy day,
the handkerchief for your snot,
The glue for your broken heart,
The one star that remains in your sky the whole day
And illuminates your moon at night.
A friend is a sibling.
And yes the only one who still gets away with calling you crap!!!

©Sena Kodjokuma 2013