Poetry

African Woman Handbook

A woman is only that.

If you don’t follow,

You’re out of line.

A bad child.

Cursed.

You will not find a man.

You will die alone.

 

A woman doesn’t talk.

Doesn’t question.

She listens.

Acts.

Life cannot be anything

That doesn’t burn the skin

Or scald the tongue.

 

19 is ripened.

Mothers are hard on us

Or we will get pregnant.

Be the talk of town.

Bear the shame called a bastard child.

 

25 is burden.

School is surplus.

Two generations whisper:

There should be something wrong with this girl.

She must prove she’s woman;

Give us a child.

 

Our mothers don’t understand.

Their mothers didn’t explain.

Nobody really understands.

My child wouldn’t understand.

I won’t explain how I too, just followed.

 

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2 thoughts on “African Woman Handbook

  1. This was a lovely post, it speaks true of the African society. You are certainly doomed if you don’t get married or bear children by a certain age; but they forget that we are a different generation with different goals and aspirations. I hope some day society will allow the girl child to choose a path that brings her happiness.

    Liked by 1 person

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