Bride Price

Photo credit: @TeffTheory on Twitter

The next time Baba tells you 
the bride price is not to buy
a woman
but to show appreciation for her,
tell him you do not pay thirty naira
for a new pen every Monday morning
to show appreciation for it

Tell him you pay thirty naira 
because you like it
you want to claim it
you want to use it
you want to show everyone
you’ve just got a pretty new pen.

Tell him 
sometimes in the city,
uncle Joba
hits aunty Kehinde
whenever she refuses him sex;
tell him you hear her screams and stifled moans
through the thin walls,
tell him you hear his curses, and heavy pants 
as he thrusts in and out of her;
‘I DID NOT PAY - YOUR FATHER - HALF MY LIFE SAVINGS -
FOR YOU TO TELL ME - WHEN I CAN - AND CANNOT - FUCK - YOU - ’

Tell him buying and selling
involves 
two or more parties,
an agreed sum of money
and a property.

Tell him you are not a property.

Shalom Esene loves reading books, writing and listening to music. An award-winning terrible dancer, cofounder and editor-in-chief of asequalsafrica.com, she is a little too in love with Shondaland shows. She can be reached on Instagram at @Shallomofficial and on Twitter at @ShalomEsene.