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Canticle of canticles
Someone said I missed the chance to name Pillow 047 Songs of Sorrow (SOS) because it was both about music and sadness. Well, one thing that the word “SOS” reminds me of is Songs of Solomon. As a child, I participated in many bible quizzes and competitions thus, the first meaning of SOS for me was as an abbreviation for the Bible book before I even knew it as the code word for emergency. Since we are talking about Solomon, who I believe to be the best love writer of the BC era, I think it’s time to talk about Tupac Shakur who I believe to be the best love writer of the 20th century.
The first time I read the letter he wrote to Jada, part of a collection he called “A Rose That Grew From Concrete”, I knew I was reading a modern-day reincarnation of Shakespeare. If you want to understand men's love motions, read Tupac. Why are we talking about Tupac? Well, last week, news came out that there had been a breakthrough in solving his murder case after 27 years. Someone was finally being charged for his death and it got me curious. “I should have seen you were trouble but I was lost, trapped in your eyes”, Tupac writes and sings in Do For Love, “I wanna take your misery and replace it with happiness but I need your faith in me”, he continues. Tell me this is not Shakespeare at work.
Tupac said there’s nothing he won’t do for love, that even after trying everything, he’d not give up, love was worth it. I think this is also true for the profession you love. Recently news came out that a British nurse, Lucy Letby was charged with killing babies under her care, like she was knowingly making infants in her hospital ward die just for the fun of it. She was caught after years of going scot-free because one of her colleagues, despite being shushed and embarrassed kept insisting the rogue nurse had something to do with the deaths. No one believed him and he was even humiliated (was asked to apologize to the killer nurse for harassment) but he kept going. He almost gave up but glad he took Tupac’s advice and never gave up, he kept at it and finally exposed the killer nurse and saved so many more infants yet unborn.
Do people still read Shakespeare today? Then it was such an honour, the first Shakespeare play I read was Merchant of Venice (still my favourite) then Macbeth and a Midsummer Night’s Dream (I think I read a couple more but can’t remember them now). Of course, Julius Ceasar was a staple in my childhood library. These books were such a window into ancient history and provided a sufficient baseline to allow me to view the world as a child. So you can imagine my shock when I came across the news that Americans have taken their political war into the classroom and are now banning children from reading some historical books. From Sarah Huckabee in Arkansas to De Santis in Florida, it’s just ridiculous that they are trying to tamper with the baselines with which children of today view tomorrow, all because of politics—no further comment.
There’s no love lost between African dictators and those they lead. The African continent has witnessed a disturbing surge in coup d'états and counter-coups, a disheartening trend exacerbated by the troubling sight of citizens celebrating the overthrow of governments. This jubilation reflects their disillusionment with supposedly democratic regimes that have, in truth, only deepened the impoverishment of the masses while lining the pockets of a select few. Democracy was touted as the saviour but so many promises remain unfulfilled, leaving people disenchanted and weary. It is important to note that many of the military figures orchestrating these power grabs are far from altruistic; their motivations likely revolve around personal gain rather than the common good. I think we have seen a rise in coups because military men from other countries have seen their colleagues stage these coups and go scot-free with no repercussions or negative effects and thus have been emboldened to follow suit. It is in times like this that Africa’s glaring lack of leadership comes to bear. It’s a slippery rope and only gets worse from here. No love lost.
“I wake up every day ready to die” was a quote that was constantly repeated by Tommy Egan, the fictional character from Power. The more you look Tommy in the eye, the more believable the quote becomes. He did very daring and stupid stuff that only someone willing to die would do. I think being ready for death takes away fear from you. Someone once said some things were worse than fear, that the fear of one’s life is nothing compared to some situations you’d go through in life. There’s something more fiery than fear, and when it comes, you will gladly embrace that which you once feared.
“Did you hear about the rose that grew from a crack in the concrete? Proving nature's law is wrong, it learned to walk without having feet. Funny it seems, but by keeping its dreams, it learned to breathe fresh air. Long live the rose that grew from concrete
when no one else ever cared”. Wise words from Tupac.
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