It doesn’t get any better than this
The smoke from the firewood filled the courtyard
The wives have started to cook
And you could tell from the orderly chaos
That manifested itself in the yard
Her sisters both half and full
Were running up and down the stairs
Fetching this and that
For the meal being prepared
The meal the men would eat
Father had not come back from the farm
And her brothers, the half ones
Had not come back from school
She had no full brothers
Which might have been the reason
Why there were this many wives
But that wasn’t true
Her father just loved his fill of women
And he constantly bragged about it
Going to school had never been an option for her
Or for any of her sisters
She had asked to
And her father had simply told her no
And that her focus should be on more important things —
Like looking pretty
So she’d catch the attention of a rich man
To be either his first or second wife
Anything other than that was disgraceful
Her brothers were the only ones
Who were granted the luxury of education
And the value of that was lost on them — the idiots
For they skipped school for more than half the week

She didn’t think it could get any better than this
At least, Father didn’t beat her mothers
Like Baba Taofeeq did to his wives next door
At least, her stepmothers were wonderful
Her friend ‘Derele, could not relate
It truly doesn’t get better than this
And if it could
She couldn’t see how.

Music. Books. Dramas.

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